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10 Pieces of Sage Advice for New Moms

It seems like the moment you get pregnant everyone wants to give you all their advice! In my opinion its annoying, but since becoming a mom I've learned how to take life lessons from those minor annoyances and now I see getting all that unsolicited mom advice as a right of passage.

You see parenting doesn't come naturally to everyone, it's and odd thing because it all seems so straight forward. But in reality parenting and motherhood happens in the moment. It's the collection of decisions and intuition that comes with having a baby and navigating your new life. It's not something you can learn second hand. However, when things get tough it's great to have a resource to remember from time to time, to help you through the hurdles.

As a seasoned middle aged - stay at home mom of 2 boys I'd like to share my wisdom and the best advice I've gotten over the years for all of you new moms out there.

1. Dont compare yourself

I know, like seriously arent we all wired to compare ourselfs with other women? The answer is yes... but that wont help you be a great mom or parent. Comparing yoruself to ther new moms or seasoned moms will only set you up for depression and anxiety. Forge your own path, parenting is mostly intuitive. Don't compare yourself to your friends or family, your values and children are completely different and require your unique parenting know-how.

2. This too shall pass

Just when you think you cant take it anymore and all hope is lost, when you haven't slept more than a few ours a night for months -and although your SO helps out around the house, you feel the weight of the world on your shoulders... it will pass. Your new baby will go through so many developmental changes in such a short amount of time that no online book or guide will be able to tell you more nor can it ever keep up better than your intuition in the moment. Remember no phase lasts forever I promise it will pass.

3. Bonding takes time

Most women don't know this but many women don't bond with their babies right away. Its totally normal! You have so much going on with post partum hormone, feeding and changing schedules, recovery and any number of other things - It's okay not to bond right away with your baby. You see, your baby is a new person that you just got introduced to... it will take time to bond and create that strong mother baby connection. So be patient with yourself and try to enjoy the mothering process.

4. Cry as much as you need to- its normal!

Seriously, I think I cried almost every day for a month (maybe more) just when I thought my emotions and hormones were stabilizing something else would turn on the waterworks. Truth is your body is going through many changes adjusting and healing from childbirth and for me that lasted well over a year. Crying is your bodies way of processing emotions it very healing to live in the moment and take some time to explore your feelings and care for yourself. Its so easy to get caught up in endless routines. If you have thoughts of suicide and feel prolonged depression seek help. There are so many great resources now, you can get many great consultations and even medication if need be.

5. Being a new mom feels very lonely

Just as its totally normal to cry its equally as normal to feel very lonely. Even if you have many people in your life, for some reason at times you will feel lonely for many different reasons - this could be due to post partum depression, or baby blues or maybe you're just navigating through some difficult feelings and relationships that don't work for you anymore. Whatever the reason, its totally normal and you will find your footing as a new mom soon enough.

6. Your husband is a new parent too.

It's easy to take all of your problems out on your partner - we all do it at some time. But keep in mind he is not a mind reader, he's not a woman and has no clue what you're really going through as a new mom. Most likely he isn't a parent either and youre both getting into this for the very first time... so just as you can't really understand him as a dad he can't understand you either. Work on communicating what you need, this will be a difficult yet beautiful time for both of you.

7. Live in the moment as much as you can

By far one of the best pieces of advice I got as a new mom - because in the blink of an eye you are crying on your doorstep watching your 5 year old head off to kindergarten. And its easier said than done for sure, there are so many emotional ups and downs - but being mindful take videos and photos of the wonderful times through infancy and toddlerhood will give you endless joyful memories. This phase doesn't last forever and you will cherish every great moment in the future.

8. Unexpected surprises are lurking around every corner

I personally believe its truly imossible to be organized and prepared as a new parent!!! No matter how much you plan there will be a monkey wrench thrown in at any given moment. Mark my words, work on your patience and your ability to go with the flow because motherhood is a wild ride.

9. Milestones don't need to be rushed

Guilty! I was potty training my first born at 6 months... every day I'd take my baby and prop him up on a little potty so that he would get it and do it all a little quicker. Well I was just so excited to reach that milestone - and I was comparing myself to my judgmental friends and family. You know what? Neither of my boys were fully potty trained before 4 years old! Imagine how much time I wasted being worried about this... it pains me to recollect it all, and I'm counting myself as lucky to be a stay at home mom and have had so much time to stress myself out ha ha. I was so excited to get ahead of the curve I gave myself way too much work that was even necessary or possible for my kids. Kids learn every milestone at their own pace- and that's just fine!

10. Your body has its own agenda

Yet another thing that can't be forced is weight-loss and getting back your pre baby body. In the first few months, your body really needs time to recover from birth. You will need to get your vitamins and mineral levels back to normal, eat as much healthy food as you can and do the right things to ensure your body has what it needs for breast feeding if that's your choice. After about 4 months reassess where you are and make a plan to ease into weightless and exercise slowly for the best long term results.... and keep in mind the rules have changed. Acceptance of your post baby body is key.

And there you have it - you've passed the fist initiation phase Congratulations!!! :)

More like this:

A letter to the depressed Stay at Home Mom

8 Things I didn't know would happen after having a baby

What to do when you feel burnt out as a stay at home mom

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