guest post: advice to a new mother, by megan hunt

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***first off, thank you for the sweet congratulatory messages. we are on cloud nine over here and feel very blessed that baby davis has finally arrived all safe and sound. while we go snuggle our new babe for a bit, i’ve asked a few of my favorite bloggers who are mothers to guest post on the blog. i have loved what they’ve put together and i am sure you will, too! Be back soon with baby’s name and more…

xo

taza


“My husband and I prepared extensively for labor and birth by reading books, taking a full Bradley Method class, and learning everything we could about every possible medical intervention or emergency that could take place. So Alice’s birth was great. It was the afterward part that we had neglected to prepare for. And that was dumb. But we learned as we went and I would love to share those lessons with you!
1. Relax and tune into what your infant is telling you. In the first days of holding my child, feeling her breathing, and learning about her facial cues and body language, we developed an emotional bond that I never expected. Using meditation and relaxation techniques really helped me “hear” and comfort my daughter. You may be nervous because you’ve never been a mom, but your child has never been an infant either– you will figure it out together.
2. You need less than you think. As Alice’s birth became imminent toward my last few weeks of pregnancy, I was in a nesting-hormone-induced panic that we hadn’t bought enough things. All we had in Alice’s room was a tiny crib, a rocking chair, a changing table, and a bookshelf and bench that we already had. Everything turned out fine (of course.) Realize that you will get plenty of gifts so hold off buying anything but the essentials until a few months after your baby is born. You will probably be surprised at how little you really need to take care of a newborn.
3. Skip the “overnight” maxi pads and just get a pack of Depends. Post-partum bleeding can be really bad. I wish someone had told me what to expect.
4. To dads: Don’t be afraid to go out alone with the baby. “Think of you and your wife as a partnership. Don’t think of having a child like ‘Oh my wife is better at all the baby stuff than I am. I just go to work and take out the trash.’ You are both new to parenthood and you both have the ability to learn about parenting.” — Advice from Mr. Lasertron

5. Allow lots of naked baby time. Nothing is better than being free, and accidents are not that hard to clean up. Naked baby time also helped me learn how to anticipate when Alice needs to go potty by watching her body language. Then I just sit her on the toilet and have lots of hugs and cheering!
6. Write down everything. Take lots of pictures. (You can even have each year made into a book using an online publisher like Blurb!) Your child will love to see it someday.
7. Moms don’t necessarily know better than dads. It’s important for dad to have alone time with baby. I have loved watching Mr. Lasertron form his own rituals and routines with Alice, like singing when he changes her and playing different games with her in the tub than I do.
8. You are not weak if you let someone else help you. It doesn’t mean you’ve “failed” or that you “can’t do it.” I did not schedule time off after Alice’s birth and I went back to work three days later, taking my baby with me every day. I struggled a lot with accepting help and I had to let go of a lot of control. Finally I was able to accept that I was surrounded by a community of support and allowing their help was part of my own personal emotional growth as a mother.
The most important advice I have is that there are no rules. You can buy lots of books about parenting, but you are the only expert on what works best for your family. Alice’s bedtime is at 2am. She comes to meetings with me all the time. Her “security blanket” is a blue bath puff. This is all okay and following your baby’s cues and fitting her into your life from the get-go is good practice for raising your child to live her own best life. Being a parent is so much more special and magical than any book or blog post can explain. Congratulations to Naomi and Josh and I can’t wait to follow the growth of your sweet little one!”
–Meg, from Princess Lasertron and new mother to Alice Elfie!
  1. Moriah

    Amen! Great post :)

  2. I really loved what she said about fitting your baby into your life. And, of course, the part about not needing a ton of stuff. What great tips. I'll remember these for when I have my own little one.

  3. Beli

    great post! and congratulations we have been anxiously waiting for this moment as well ;) Im not a mom yet but, hopefully soon I will be, these are great advice.

  4. Beautiful Post, I really enjoyed reading it. It eill take another couple of years until I plan on getting pregnant but some of my friends are expecting their first child so it's good to pass on the tips.
    I think motherhood is the most awesome thing that can happen to your life. Ever.
    Thanks for sharing!
    x

  5. Kelly

    omg, amen to everrrything!! I wore depends for the first like two months. I hate trying to fit pads just right into your underwear. and Yes, there are NO RULES!! I read every book out there about how to train your baby to do …whatever. and while they are great advice… if you dont want to let your baby cry to sleep then you dont have to. If you do want to… great. To this day, my 6 mon old knows exactly what he wants and he is usually right. For example, he was taking three naps and sleeping 12 hours at night.. then he started waking up around 5 am…ah! I would try and try to let him scream and cry back to sleep but doi mommy… it was my fault. He was not tired!! I cut out one nap and he is back to sleeping 12 peaceful hours at night. Also, I loved kangaroo time (naked baby on naked mommys chest) there are lots of reasons why this is good for mommy and baby. However, everything else, she pretty much got it right on. Those were the lessons I learned the hard way.

    Congrats and just remember, the first two to three months are BY FARRRR the hardest. The first month then the second is a little easier and so on. Mommyhood is so amazing. I dont even know you but I can tell you will be an awesome mommy ( I am Rachel Lanham Kittos friend btw)

    congrats again.
    whoa, sorry about the novel

  6. My husband and I are preparing to bring a little one into our lifes. This was a really uplifting post that took a lot off of my mind. Thank you so much for sharing!

  7. Monique

    This is great advice. I'm engaged and hope to have a baby soon after we get married. I love the advice to the dads. It's so important for them to be hands on and have alone time with the wee little one. Great guest post.

  8. Wonderful post. As a mumma to be – this is the advice you really need and want to hear. Thank you so much Megan! :)

  9. Parenthood= best thing ever. That's all.

  10. jasmine

    wow. GREAT advice, meg!!! and alice elfie is such a little doll. ohhhh, she is SO CUTE.

  11. We don't have any plans to get pregnant any time soon (though things always happen!) but reading this was so thought provoking and all of the advice has resounded a hundred times in my head so far. I love everything you said, Megan! I've seen the Mom-guilt-looks that new moms get so its nice to know not all moms are that way!

    Congratulations Naomi and Josh! Can't wait to hear the little one's name!

  12. Aura

    Thank you so much for this! Counting down the weeks (only 8 to go) until our little girl is here. I got a laugh out of the depends comments, because my sister warned me about the same thing. It sounds horrifying, but I'm sure I will be so happy to have her here with us that I won't mind changing my own diaper a few times a day :)

  13. I remember feeling panicked when we were told we could leave the hospital and take our little baby girl home. The thought of not having my personal nurses on call for every little question or worry completely terrified me. The advice my doctor gave me was exactly what I needed to hear. She said, "Julie, just feed her, change her, and love her, and everything will be wonderful."

    Congratulations, Naomi & Josh! I'm so happy for you both–being a parent is so much fun!

  14. newly mothers need all the encouragement and advice they can have, thanks!

  15. ahh my little girl means the world to me! she's almost 2 months, yet it feels like i've had her here with me for forever.
    nothing beats being a mom!
    love her like crazy, take thousands of pictures of even the littlest things.
    i'm so thankful i took pictures of the small things she did when she was first born because she's already grown so much. I look back on those pictures and just remember EVERY single thing.
    congrats! you will love it.

    brittany
    http://www.population250trends.blogspot.com

  16. Holly

    this is so wonderful. Meg, you're great!

  17. Such great advice, I love it! I would like to add…a 2 am bedtime is fine for now, but when little Alice is 5 and starting school, I pity you for the nights of change as you adjust your schedule! :P I LOVE this post.

  18. I can't wait to hear what you named your baby girl!

    -amanda
    sweetsavorcooking.blogspot.com

  19. I LOVE everything about this post. Everything. just adorable. wonderful. I don't have kids and don't plan to for a while but awh is this a post i want to save.

  20. I love this idea of having guest mother blog posts. Such great insight. I'm starting to hear a lot of things that people fail to tell you so it's nice to see what others say about having a baby. btw congratulations Josh and Naomi…what a precious little bundle of joy.

  21. Regina

    As a mother I five I wish someone had given me exactly these advices for my first baby: Simply, true, loving reality and absolutely well working.

    Greeting from Cologne/Germany
    Regina

  22. Sera

    these pictures are so sweet! and i think this is excellent advice!

  23. i loved this: You may be nervous because you've never been a mom, but your child has never been an infant either– you will figure it out together.

    i am not a mom (not even married) but i still really enjoyed this post!

  24. Colleen

    I definitely need to bookmark this for a few years from now. Thanks Meg, Alice and Daddy Laserton!

  25. Well, that relaxes me a little bit. I was already nervous about this stuff and we're not going to try and get pregnant untill later this year. Thankyou.

  26. we're expecting a girl in one month! thank you for the real, down-to-earth advice!

  27. I'm a mama of three and love this sweet and simple advice (wish I'd had it before I became a mama the first time!)

  28. Yes – Completely agree w/ # 3!!! I wish I'd known! ha – the depends worked so much better!!!

    great advice all around!

  29. Thanks Meg for the great post. I am so happy for you and Taza. You both have such lovely little girls.

  30. Linka

    I love this post so sweet!! and True!

  31. Gussy

    i love #4, #7 and #8 — all really great tips that i will remember when it's our time :]

  32. Katie

    alice is ADORABLE! and what great advice! thanks meg.

  33. Rachel

    My husband & I aren't near having kids yet, but I LOVED reading this! & loved the pictures too! Thanks fo sharing! & your new little girl is SO precious! I can't wait to find out what you're naming her!

  34. I love this post!! "no rules" is a great advice…and I really think that this post is very practical!

  35. Melany

    haha i laughed outloud at the depends part. so true. that's what they put you in in the hospital so i kept asking the hurse for extras and i took them home. yes, the first 2 months are the hardest but i remember feeling totally healed and pretty normal by 6 weeks post delivery. it was so funny, i was so dead tired but had this feeling of euphoria all the time because i was so happy to have become a mom so it balanced out. such a special time!

  36. I love the picture of Alice and husband together.

    I can't wait to see my husband in a moby wrap!

  37. oh I love this post!

    congratulations on the arrival of your baby!!

  38. As a somewhat new mom myself, I have to say that this is one of the best bits of advice I can recall reading. Tune into your child and your own instincts; figure it out as you go along; there is no 'right' or 'wrong'. All so very true.

  39. Jenn

    What great advice. I not have two boys 10 and 8. (I had my kids really young!) One thing I've learned for sure is that there are no rules!

    PS I have that red dress. I got my from Tulle is that where that one is from?

  40. Jen

    Amazing post. Thanks so much. I wish I had known these before I became a mother. I am new to your blog and I just have to say that this blog is quickly becoming one of my favorites. Thanks so much for sharing your life and motivating women everywhere!

  41. Loved this guest post!

    my favorite was "6. Write down everything. Take lots of pictures. (You can even have each year made into a book using an online publisher like Blurb!) Your child will love to see it someday."

    Thank you for introducing me to a great website for photo books. im excited to make my wedding book.

    i also loved to record every step of your Childs life. im not having kids right now ,but sure cant wait to record theirs lives when I do.

    <3 Razz
    http://foreverrazz.blogspot.com/

  42. Chelsea

    Great post!

    My advice, keep at it with nursing! DON'T GIVE UP!
    All of the new mom's out there, it's hard! We know this, BUT both mom and baby are learning something completely new to them. Keep trying! Get advice from your friends who have been successful at it, talk to your dr., talk to your midwife or lactationists who can help you get good at it! If you still have trouble nursing, try to pump! Your baby needs that milk!

    I didn't have a good support group around me when it came to learning how to get my baby to latch, i had a really hard time with it, so i pumped for 6 months and boy was it inconvinient! I was a slave to that pump! I had to do it every 2 hours. It wasn't the funnest experience but saved us alot of money and i gave my son the best milk he could ask for!

  43. i like the emphasis on the father's involvement, mr lasertron. thanks for the advice!

  44. Thanks everyone so much for your sweet comments!

    The Emily: You are right about the bedtime–as she has gotten older it has gotten earlier!

    Jenn: Yes, the dress is from Tulle! It's the only one that fit me after Alice was born. :)

    Chelsea: You are right about nursing!! That's excellent advice. Nursing Alice hurt worse than childbirth for the first few weeks (I talked to every LLL member I could find, it just took us a long time to figure it out together) but I am so glad every day that i stuck with it.

    xo

  45. Hey choosing baby name is very interesting and difficult job,
    Mostly people want their baby names to be unique or different
    Than others, but I think choosing a normal name is better ….

    http://www.mumzone.com.au/baby-names.php

  46. Miss K

    This is some of the best advice i've heard! thank you so much for sharing and for your honesty!!