Having A Baby? Where’s The Instruction Manual?

The first time I found out I was pregnant was one of the happiest days of my life. I called my husband and we were so excited and very happy. I then called my mother right away and I will never forget the sound of her voice and her emotion. She was so happy. Then I really thought about all the changes that my body was about to go through and I cried.

I read books, googled info and even talked to other moms. I wanted to be prepared. I got everything ready. Clothing, blankets and hospital bag. Everything was ready and organized. I had a beautiful baby shower and I will always remember those special moments shared with family and friends. I was ready and set so I thought…

As the days went by my body started changing. I got stretch marks and applied creams and lotions hoping they would go away. My hair got thinner and was falling out. My weight started to change. I cried a lot. I cut my hair off by my self. I didn’t know who I was anymore. I was so sick. I could not eat and some smells really made me sick. I felt like a crazy wild animal ready to attack anyone who pissed me off. Not pleasant at all. Sleep was hard. My body was changing and pregnancy was so difficult. Some people tell you they feel beautiful when they are pregnant and they glow… and I was like “That’s a friken lie!” “You’re all liars!”. I couldn’t eat, sleep or fit into anything nice. My moods were crazy and I hated the entire process. Don’t get me wrong I was also very excited to meet my little girl.

CRAVINGS WHILE PREGO: My cravings were corn with butter, peanut M&Ms, hamburgers, subs and pickles.

The body changes so much. Breasts become huge, feet legs and everything swells like balloons. Back pain and cramps. You go to the bathroom very often. Some women experience a lot of saliva and have to spit a lot. Rashes and yeast infections are common. Stretch marks and weight gain. Walking and breathing become difficult. It’s very challenging to go through pregnancy. Who ever has less symptoms is super lucky.

April 23 at 5:30 in the morning I took a shower and my water broke. I looked at my husband and said “Is this supposed to happen? I’m leaking.” We rushed to the hospital and 12 hours later after hard labour, pain, crying turning into a red balloon and looking like the girl that turns into a grape from “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” I gave birth to my beautiful Eleni. My husband has a different story and perspective on how things happen. Apparently I was very angry at him and yelled at him and after having the baby I was back to my loving normal self. But what ever…lol 😀 Everything goes away when you hold your baby in your arms for the first time. From the minute I gave birth all I could think about is the love and safety for this little human.

I will always remember my mother’s face as she held my daughter. I will never forget the warmth on her loving face. The smile and love. I miss her. Anyhow, I can’t help but get so emotional writing this…

So the next day off we went home. It’s like “So here’s your baby! Have a nice day and thank you for coming and good luck!” I’m like “what are we going to do now, No instruction manual?” I read so much and yet everything gets tossed out the window because each baby and experience is different. It is always good to know your basics but it feels overwhelming when you go home with your baby. Everything changes. Your perspective on life changes.

First three months I had very little sleep. My little girl ate often and I went to a nurse for breast feeding classes which really helped. I did breast feeding for a year with my first little girl. It was hard work and also so special and very beautiful. The feeling and bond when you breast feed is one I will remember for ever. It’s truly remarkable. In the beginning there are more feedings and it can be challenging but as time goes by the baby’s feedings get bigger in each sitting and the feedings become less often which is good. The first three months are a huge adjustment. I’m so grateful my husband was able to stay home with me for two weeks.

The infant stage is so sweet. All the little clothing and the baby making cute sounds. Very sweet when they laugh and giggle. The baby smell is amazing but the diapers overflowing with poop is not so much fun. I loved the infant stage because babies are so cute to hold and snuggle with. They are adorable and beautiful. Now the toddler stage is another fun challenge!

Infant Items that can be helpful

Baby Thermometer

Medicine Dropper

Aspirator

Gripe Water

Soother

Breast cream if you are breast feeding

Bottle Sterilizer ( I used AVENT)

Diapers

Diaper Cream ( I used Desitin)

Sound Machine

Burping Pads

Diapers

Having children comes with no instruction manual. Everything you read doesn’t always work for everyone but there is one thing that always works and it’s a mother’s instinct. That is one thing that really helped me out. It’s like this super magical power that happens the minute you hold your baby for the first time. A mother just knows the babies cries and needs. Let me know in the comments if you know what I’m talking about.

Pregnancy is different for everyone. While some find it easy some find it really difficult. My first pregnancy was so different than my second pregnancy. With my first, I breast fed for one year and my second I only breast fed for two months. I switched to formula because she was premature and I was stressed because of the loss of family member so that made things really difficult for me. My first girl was born close to 40 weeks but my second baby was only 26 weeks. First child took over 12 hours to be born and my second one took only 3-4 hours to be born. So each baby is different.

I hope I’ve helped you out in some way in this article. Please feel free to comment or share your story in the comments. Thank you all for reading.

TIPS

Get sleep when baby sleeps.

Take walks and get outdoors.

Ask for help when you need.

Talk to someone if you feel sad or down.

If you are planning to breast feed take the class they offer at the hospital.

When Breast feeding keep water by your side and drink because you can get dehydrated.

Always stay hydrated and eat fresh healthy foods and soups if you decide to breast feed. Some foods may bother baby and give the baby gas. Keep track of what you are eating. It helps.

*Don’t get stressed if you can’t breast feed. It’s not a shameful or bad thing. It’s okay and there are plenty of formulas that will work for your baby. You have done nothing wrong. You are an amazing mother.

Baby rash butt cream that I used for both babies DESITIN

Give baby lots of snuggles and cuddles and love. Skin to skin is lovely.

Gripewater helps with gas and upset tummies.

I massaged both of my babies gently everyday with oils and it helped baby sleep better.

After baby feeds it’s great to gently sit them up and rub their back until they get a good burp. Sometimes digestion and gas can cause babies to cry.

If someone you know offers to babysit say yes! Enjoy some time for your self.

When your partner is home let him/her take over for a while and enjoy a shower, bath or nap. Seriously it helps!

If you are breast feeding ask your doctor for cream for your nipples. They can get dry and irritated sometimes.

Ask for help when it gets too much for you or if you are feeling tired. If you feel alone or sad at anytime of your pregnancy ask for help and always talk to someone. There is always someone here to help. A family member, friend, nurse and doctor. They are here to help you no matter what you are going through. Know that your emotions and hormones are all over the place and it is very normal. Feel free to ask me any question and I’m here to chat with you any time you like in the comments.

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