[Guest Post] Becoming a new parent: The ultimate journey

Thanks to our friend, Charma, for this lovely post on becoming a parent! Keep up with more of Charma & “Mr. A’s” stories at surprisedmama.com.

new babyRecently, we got a chance to visit some friends of ours and see their beautiful newborn baby girl. She was wrapped up nice and cozy with her parents watching her every moment, trying to decipher the needs of each little cry and it took me back to our time in the hospital almost 2 years ago.

We were once in their shoes, watching our son lovingly and beaming like proud new parents every time someone came in. Yes, that’s how things are during the first couple of hours of accepting your new role as a parent.

Then, there comes a point when all of that newness fades away and reality hits you.

I think our new mom friend said it best when she looked at me and asked “So what do I do when she cries and it’s just the two of us?” It was funny that she asked that because on the way into the hospital, my son’s dad and I saw a couple taking their newborn home and he mentioned that the moment when we took our son home from the hospital was one of the scariest moments of his life. Once we took him home, he was truly ours and there were no doctors or nurses that we could push a button and have run into the room if his sneeze sounded funny or if he didn’t latch on properly. That nervous feeling is one that a majority of new parents feel.

Now that I’ve been a mom for two years, I finally feel confident enough to share some tips that I learned from my experiences as a first time parent.
- It’s okay to fear the first diaper change. I think I did a good job, considering my son’s diaper was the first that I ever remember changing…EVER! Plus, if I did it wrong, I knew Mr. A would let me know sooner versus later.
- It’s alright to use the diaper bag as a purse too. I found this out the hard way when I tried to take my purse, the diaper bag, and the newborn to his first doctor’s appointment. Talk about a juggling act. Now, I will say ladies, if you’re going to do this, just remember to remove your keys and wallet from the diaper bag when you drop your child off at daycare. Otherwise, you may not be able to get back in your car or buy lunch.
- The first blowout diaper is a thing that CAN be feared! Trust me…it’s not as cute as the diaper commercials try and make them seem. Add a confused, wriggly baby and material that you didn’t even know could be washed and you know exactly what I’m talking about.
- The first night home is not an indicator of the rest of your lives together. I’m just going to say that we swore that Mr. A hated our apartment and I’m glad we had a chance to get 2.5 hours of sleep in the hospital.
- It’s okay to be nervous about the first time you’re alone with your child. Trust me, there were a lot of tears when my mom had to leave and Mr. A’s dad was still at work. I’m not quite sure what Mr. A was crying about but after a while he and I both got the hang of our roles and we’re pretty okay being alone now. I think we play nicely together (sans this whole “mine” phase he’s going through right now).

All in all, we made it through the long nights and ridiculously short days intact. Our little guy is almost 2 and I don’t think I would trade any of the moments we’ve had.

So if you are a new parent or parent-to-be don’t stress about trying to be the perfect parent. Do what works best for you and your child and get plenty of rest and help when it is offered. Everything will work out fine because at the end of the day, when you look at your child and see that they are happy and in love with you as much as you are with them, that’s all that really matters. Or at least that’s all that matters in the world of Surprised Mama and Mr. A.

What were your first few weeks with your little one like?

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