If I Could Do It All Over Again: Beginners Mistakes of a First Time Mom

A first time mom receives so many advices from her family and surrounding, it becomes hard for her to filter the good ones from the bad ones, especially that most of these advices are conflicting and controversial. On top of all that, hearing your baby cry when he is only few days old is so stressful, you begin to doubt everything everyone tells you anyway no matter how much you trust them or how much experience they have…

Below are some of the beginners mistakes I made as a first time mommy that I hope not to repeat the second time around.

  1. Not Buying or Renting a milk pump in advance: even though my husband and I took many pre-natal classes where an experienced midwife talked us through all the steps of childbirth and the difficulties of the first days at home, I never really grasped how painful it could be for your milk to come in, nor have I fully understood the importance of putting your baby to breastfeed between 8 and 12 times every day. That is until I came home from the hospital (yes, they discharged me before my milk came in!) and ended up with a couple of swollen breasts and a baby who refused to breastfeed for various (human induced) reasons… Not being able to pump my milk out resulted in days of unbarable pain, lots of tears and long endless hours of hand expression…
  2. Doubting my or my baby’s ability to latch on and breastfeed: an hour after I gave birth and while still in the delivery room, my baby was able to latch on in the most natural way. Yet, from the moment I got to my room, every single nurse, midwife and childcare personnel decided it was not meant to be, and due to my lack of experience I drifted into their nonsense.
  3. Giving baby a bottle on his early days: everyone knows it is normal for a baby to lose weight during the first couple of days, and it is also normal for the mother not to get milk right away, in fact, at birth, a baby can stay up to 4 days without eating anything! So if you wish to breastfeed, don’t let that “well-intentioned” medical crew middle in!
  4. Doubting my milk supply: milk comes progressively, you won’t be able to express 200ml from day 1 and it is normal! Because milk is custom made! What your baby needs, your body will create…
  5. Swaddling: at some point during the fussiness of the first few days, I remember clearly someone mentioning swaddling, but the idea of rapping up my baby like a Christmas gift terrified me so much, I didn’t dare persist… Never again! Swaddling can be a sleep savior!
  6. Over stressing about baby weight loss: this I could not emphasize enough on! Getting discharged from the hospital 3 days after giving birth, everyone made us go through hell concerning baby’s weight curve! And even though you know it is perfectly normal for baby to lose up to 10% of his/her weight on the early days, it is kind of hard not to freak out when everyone else is!
  7. Waking up baby too often: still in the same wide category of food and weight, don’t hover over your baby’s head all day waiting for him to flicker his eye in order to wake him up and feed him! Let him be! He will let you know when he’s hungry, just don’t let him go up to 6 hours without eating to avoid hypoglycemia.
  8. Putting baby on a specified feed length: 10 mins on each breast they say, but the truth is every baby is an individual and his/her suction abilities don’t mature before 4 months old, so if your baby is taking 40-45 mins to breastfeed, don’t believe he/she is taking advantage of your kindness, just let them be, it’s a phase and it will soon pass and believe it or not, if you’re a tv lover, you will miss it too.
  9. Travelling too early: my husband and I went home a month after our baby was born. Even though having family around has its advantages, everything changed for baby and mommy and at the end of the day it was too much to handle.
  10. Not letting baby sleep in his crib during the day: it’s true, you cannot spoil a baby, but what you can do is create bad habits early on… Life would be so much easier if you just don’t…
  11. Not buying the baby bouncy chair early on: I thought, what the hell, what would I need it for during the first few months! I was WRONG!
  12. Not putting baby down to play: even though separation anxiety doesn’t appear till later in an infant’s life, it can be accentuated if mommy is too afraid to let baby be for a short while on his own… Things will not be pretty afterwards, I am warning you…
  13. Not preparing food in advance or having other alternatives: the biggest problem my husband and I faced as we came home from the hospital was hunger! Not used to cooking my husband’s hands were completely tied while I was overwhelmed with the baby… Let’s just say these were not my healthiest diet days…

We often say third time is a charm, let’s just hope we can get it right from the 2nd time with babies…

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3 thoughts on “If I Could Do It All Over Again: Beginners Mistakes of a First Time Mom

  1. of all the shitty first mistakes a mom can do .. urs are not that a big of a deal trust me .. all of them are under control now im pretty sure of it .. remember the book you gave me ? there is no perfect parents? .. l7amdella inu those first mistakes wont do any remarkable damages to the baby .. the first days are always complicated its normal its a new phase ..

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  2. Yes, yes, yes to everything you said about breastfeeding. Everyone is so quick to tell is that we are doing it wrong and starving our baby. I stopped way earlier than I planned with with both of mine because I listened to other people instead or my instincts. Great post! All true!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much! My husband and I were watching a documentary the other day and were so surprised to discover that 1/2 women stops breastfeeding after one month only because of this pressure! Isn’t that just terrible!? Instead of being the most natural thing, breastfeeding feels more like a battle every single day!

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