When you welcome your new baby into your home, that first month can feel like a blur. While you’re full of love and excitement over the blessing of your new addition, it can also feel like you’re going through the day in a blur. Here are some tips on how to survive – and thrive during your first month with your baby.
Stay as caught up on sleep as possible
You might have heard it before: sleep when the baby sleeps. This is good advice. While it might be tempting to get caught up on house cleaning, laundry, or another project, take time for yourself to rest. If your baby is napping, take a nap, too. There is plenty of time later to catch up on things. Prioritizing sleep as much as possible will help keep you healthy – mentally, emotionally, and physically.
Prioritize healthy eating
You probably won’t feel up to – or even have time to – cook a lot during those first few weeks. But, that doesn’t mean you should let your healthy eating go to the wayside. Prioritize nutrition by keeping plenty of healthy, wholesome snacks and food in your home. Prior to your newborn’s arrival, cook some meals and freeze them, or buy some healthy pre-cooked entrees that you can easily warm up when you’re feeling tired. If you do have to cook, plan a menu of simple meals that don’t require a lot of forethought or time in the kitchen. Healthy eating translates to more energy and quicker thinking.
Ask for help
There is no shame in needing and asking for help. There are a variety of resources available to you, too. Your medical team and pediatrician are there for you, your family and friends, and even neighbors may be willing to step in to cook a meal, babysit for an hour while you take a nap, or even run errands for you. Also, consider hiring a newborn care specialist that can help give you the extra hand you need. These nannies are trained specifically in the art of newborn care. They can help with all aspects of newborn care, including providing breast feeding tips or helping with bottle feeding or sleep training.
And last, remember that changes in life can feel overwhelming at first. While welcoming a baby into your family is an exciting time that is full of joy, it can also feel like a lot all at once. Recognize that you will make mistakes, that you are only human, and celebrate small victories as you get to know the newest little human in your life. Giving yourself grace will help not just in the first month – but for your whole parenthood journey.