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What you’ll find here: things to expect during the first few weeks of baby’s life, and tips on how to survive the first 3 months with a newborn.
All of us Mama’s have been there… The whirlwind birth experience, the joy of finally holding your tiny baby in your arms, and complete awe for this next chapter of life post-baby!
And then you take your newborn home.
You are now completely responsible for keeping this tiny human alive!! Even though you spent 50,000 hours on Pinterest “preparing,” nothing can truly prepare you for what those first 3 months with a newborn are like.
How to Survive The First 3 Months with a Newborn
New moms, second-time moms, tenth-time moms; here are some things that can make life easier when bringing a baby home and will help you through the first 3 months with a newborn…
1) REST WHEN YOU CAN
Notice how it doesn’t say, SLEEP when you can. This is for a reason!
I had so many people tell me, “Oh yeah, you just sleep when the baby is sleeping.” I knew I wouldn’t be getting much sleep but I definitely underestimated just what that meant.
Here was my routine those first few weeks home:
7:00 PM –> feed baby
7:45 PM –> change diaper, burp baby
8:15 PM –> rock baby for however long it takes to get her to sleep
8:30-9:00 PM –> lay baby down to sleep
9:15 PM –> try to eat, pee, shower, sleep
9:16 PM –> baby is awake… REPEAT PROCESS
Can any other moms relate? This isn’t an exact schedule but it felt like there were many days of just trying to get by.
How do we solve this?
My husband would take over diaper changes, or make food ahead of time so I could eat and lay right down. This would give me time to rest some and, eventually, when we switched to formula, he was able to take some feedings as well.
Sleep wasn’t always on the table but finding those moments to rest, even for a minute, really helped.
– Baby Waking Up Multiple Times a Night: here’s what you need to know
– 6 Sleep Training Methods that ACTUALLY work (and that don’t involve Cry It Out!)
– 4 Month Sleep Regression: why it is the most important one to get right!
2) COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR SPOUSE
Let’s start with this… Do not expect your spouse to be able to read your mind! You can read this post about communicating with your spouse for more info on that!
You are already exhausted, so don’t waste more energy on bickering with your spouse.
Communicate to them what you need in that moment.
If you need a few minutes alone because you’ve had the baby all day, tell them! Don’t expect them to know that they should offer to do this for you – even though it’s hard to think that way sometimes (I’m guilty of this too).
If your spouse has every good intention towards you, they won’t mind, but they can’t do what you don’t ask!
Also, it’s okay to express “not okay” emotions with your spouse.
I am one of the many new moms who dealt with postpartum depression. I should have opened up to my husband earlier about it, but once I did he was able to understand more where I was coming from.
Remember, you both love each other, and the best thing you can do during this time is to clearly communicate your needs to one another.
Also check these things new dads can do to give your spouse some ideas on ways to help you out!
3) DON’T OVERDO IT
No matter your labor experience, don’t push yourself to do too much too soon! I say this from personal experience, as I busted a couple of stitches (TMI) a few days after I got home from the hospital.
These were just little things like getting up to make my own food, grabbing my phone from the bedroom, or going outside to check the mail. You just had a baby, it’s okay to ask for some help! This leads me to my next point…
4) DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP
I think sometimes we feel like we have to “have it all together.” We sense a weakness in ourselves when we urge to ask for help.
Guess what? You are weak! We all are. And it’s okay to ask for help.
If you believe in God, he says this in His word:
“In the same way, even though we are many individuals, Christ makes us one body and individuals who are connected to each other.” Romans 12:5
We are created for relationship with one another! So you don’t have to be afraid to reach out and ask for help if you need it! This doesn’t make you a bad mom, or show that you don’t know what you are doing.
Seasoned moms know what you are going through and would be glad to help! If you need to nap, take a shower or especially if you are having feelings linked to PPD, call someone up.
It can be a parent, grandparent, friend, or even someone from your church.
I know there are situations where you might not live close to family or have a spouse to help out… try finding a local church or even a trusted neighbor to come over for a bit.
If you don’t have anyone close in proximity, a phone call to just chat with someone can help tremendously!
5) TRUST YOUR MATERNAL INSTINCTS
One night, when my daughter was about two weeks old, we noticed she started breathing funny. We immediately took her to the ER and found out that she had an upper respiratory infection.
This isn’t a huge deal for adults but for a newborn, it was very scary! We were then able to ask questions and take measures to help her get better, rather than wait for it to get worse.
You know your child better than ANYONE, and you know when something is wrong.
I would much rather be safe than sorry, especially when it comes to a newborn. That is why it is so important to find a pediatrician who you absolutely love and feel comfortable calling to ask questions.
If your child also looks slower at meeting some 0-3 months milestones, it’s also worthwhile checking with your pediatrician.
6) KEEP A FEEDING LOG
This this this!
So simple yet I would have never thought of it had the hospital not given us a feeding log printout.
If you suffered from “pregnancy brain” during those 9 months, don’t worry, it then turns into “mom brain.” It got to be way too much to remember how long ago I had fed her, or how much!
The printable also had a slot to put whenever they had a wet/dirty diaper. This came in handy when the pediatrician asked how many wet/dirty diapers she had per day at her first few doctor’s appointments.
We would literally whip out the feeding log at the pediatrician’s office and not have to guess!
Don’t have a feeding log? Don’t worry, I’ve created one for you, with EXACTLY what you need to track with your newborn! You can download it here for FREE. 🙂
7) ENJOY THE SNUGGLES
I’ve saved the best for last! They don’t lie when they say it goes by too quick.
As many sleepless nights and long days we had, I’ve never regretted holding my daughter and letting her snuggle on my chest as much as I did.
You won’t regret snuggling them, only not snuggling them enough.
The first 3 months with a newborn are definitely tough, adjusting to life with a little one! Hopefully, these tips can help make life a little easier for those first few months post-baby.
Once you make it through those first few 3 months with a newborn, you will see a routine starts to develop and maybe even *GASP* sleep again, regaining a sense of normalcy!
Do you have a baby and have some more tips for moms during those first 3 months with a newborn? Then please let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you 🙂
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Meet The Author
Mindy is first and foremost a Christ-follower, wife & momma to a fiery red-headed little girl. She also the author of the Mindy Jones Blog. After transitioning from stay-at-home mom to work-from-home mom, she quickly realized how tough it can be to balance it all! She has a huge PASSION for encouraging & helping other moms balance work while still loving their spouses and kids WELL… and is usually happy with a Diet Coke in hand. 🙂