I recently had the privilege of becoming a mother and, irrespective of how clichéd it sounds, having a child has transformed my life completely.
Before this bundle of joy (and other less pleasant things) came to my world, I was bombarded with multiple totkas, home remedies, tales of old and traditional methods to cater and raise a child. However, ever since I gave birth, I have come to realize that most of the suggestions thrown at me are not as effective as promised, and most of the time, I have to resort to Google to help me understand what to do next.
Therefore, for all the new mothers out there, I have decided to put together a list to tips which no one will tell you, because not everyone is aware of these things.
Using diapers from day one will do no harm to your baby. The myth is that the baby will get rashes from using diapers so early, but that is not true. It all depends on the skin of the baby; if the skin is sensitive, it would get a rash from even a cloth, so this idea is baseless.
While this is not necessary, if you feel afraid of carrying your baby without any support, you can definitely try swaddling for better movement.
Breastfeeding is hard for the first few days. In some cases, the baby may start to suck after three weeks, which is perfectly normal, so you do not have to worry. If you are unable to breastfeed your baby, you can temporarily top-feed them, but with a spoon, not feeder. But continuously try to breastfeed the baby, in order to make them accustomed to it. A mother’s feed is the best diet for a baby and it helps of them. Also, mothers can lose the pregnancy weight with regular feeding.
Many tips and techniques can be adopted by viewing the videos available on internet for new mothers. It is really helpful and I speak of this from personal experience.
Babies don’t sleep all the time. It’s a myth that a baby will spend most of its time sleeping. So don’t worry if your little angle is not sleeping much. As long as the baby is urinating properly and is mostly happy, things are just fine.
You can kiss your sleep goodbye, because that is a luxury you won’t be able to afford for some time.
Your life will never be the same – and it is something you need to accept. The sooner you do that, the better it would be. You will go through many changes, some good, some bad, but they will all eventually pay off.
BATH AND MASSAGE
Do it yourself. Don’t depend on anyone else for it, thinking that you might make a mistake. Follow your gut instincts.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. This is the first time you are doing it; obviously you are going to need all the support you can get. Even if this is not your first pregnancy, things can be hard to work on without any support. So don’t be hesitant.
You will start giving out many different odors and initially you will smell like milk, burps, excretion and vomit, and you will probably feel bad about yourself… but don’t. This is part and parcel of becoming a mother and everyone goes through it. So bask in its smelly glory.
SKIN TO SKIN CONTACT
Play a lot with your kid, make them smile and laugh, and maintain a skin-to-skin contact with the baby. It will create a stronger bond between you and your child.
Take care of yourself. Pregnancy takes a toll on the mother, so make sure that you stay fit and healthy, have a proper diet and are motivated and happy.
So there you have it, the 12 tips new mothers should know about, that no one else would tell you directly. Just enjoy this moment because they are not going to be this cute and cuddly forever.
About the author: Hafsa Lodhi is an intermediate chartered accountant, who has a master’s degree in international relations, and she is based in Dhaka, Bangladesh.