Reflecting Season: Things I Want To Tell Soon-To-Be Mamis

This time of year has been making me feel very nostalgic, because I remember last year, very pregnant, putting the finishing touches on everything in preparation for Mr. Sweetie to arrive. I was baking a lot of bread, and doing a lot of peeing. People were telling me to enjoy myself, because soon my life would be completely different. I went through a short phase toward the end of my pregnancy where I was extremely aware that I was doing things for what very well may be the last time – at least, the last time in the sense that I was saying goodbye to my old life. I remember thinking about how excited I was, but also how sad, and uncertain, I felt. I was exchanging what I had known my entire life for something I had absolutely no way of predicting: motherhood. I just crossed my fingers and toes and hoped for the best.

All this has gotten me thinking, partially because an acquaintance will be having a baby soon, about what I wish I had known before I became a mother. And so, in the spirit of the season, here is a short list of some things, based on my experience. I hope they are of some help to soon-to-be mamis out there.

 

  • I know it’s so hard to do, because of all the excitement and trips to the bathroom, but making a conscious effort to really rest, relax, and pamper yourself is completely worth it. After the baby is born, no matter how much you are in love with the new little person in your life, there will be points when you will crave a solitary bath, a quiet meal, a peaceful midnight drive. Trying not to focus too much on the big day looming ahead, and instead being present in the moment, will help you to remember the importance of patience and finding some time for yourself later on. You will also need your energy for labor.
  • When in labor, communicate what you need. Don’t let yourself be pressured into pushing when you do not feel ready. When it is time, your body will start squeezing the air out of you, and that’s the signal. Pushing feels exactly like pushing out a stubborn poop. It seems counter-intuitive, but focus on those muscles instead.
  • Yay! Your sweetie is born! Now…go! Be a mami! …Wait, but diapers are hard, my body is still recovering, breastfeeding isn’t working, I’m exhausted but can’t sleep…hello? Help? When Mr. Sweetie was first born, it took¬† a couple very hard weeks to get breastfeeding down (see my article here). I slept what little I could sitting up in a bed because he wouldn’t sleep unless he was being held. I could only really do diapers with Cisco helping me (we moved like an eight-limbed being for the first week, both completely inexperienced but doing it together, and when he went back to working his three jobs, I was terrified). My body was healing, and it itched so terribly for the first month, I thought I had an infection (tests were negative). In the meantime, I had a baby that I was still learning how to hold properly, and I felt like I was feeling around in the dark a lot of the time, trying things and failing miserably, or succeeding, and learning the language of parent and child.
  • If you are a mother who is staying at home, at first, you will probably feel overwhelmed. You will have beautiful moments, like staring at your little sweetie’s hand, and all those tiny fingers, unable to express how incredulous you feel that this person grew inside of you. You will have moments of feeling how long the days are, and wondering how much longer until a phase has passed. You will probably feel lonely a lot more than before, because you will have moments of wishing someone were there in that exact instant, and they aren’t. When you feel this, reach out. Sometimes you just need to hear another adult’s voice.
  • As much as people say it,¬† it’s really true (I still have to remind myself of this sometimes) that things change, which is hard to remember when they are rough, and hard to let go of when they are smooth. Your sweetie is doing a lot of growing and developing, both inside and out, and there will be a lot of ups and downs as its body adjusts to the world. At the same time, you are dealing with your own changes as you learn about mamihood, and balancing the two can be tricky, but it is not impossible. Don’t give up on yourself. Sometimes you might feel invisible behind your baby, but you are still yourself, and you need to be able to take care of you, too.
  • If you have a partner, try to remember the importance of your relationship in the midst of welcoming a sweetie, too. I would have moments of realizing that I hadn’t given Cisco a hug that day, and realized I missed him, so I would be sure to try and remember to do it every day, and I was happy I did. It was a simple thing that helped us keep our bond strong. It’s an excellent feeling to be supported and be supportive, and it makes adjusting to mamihood a lot easier.

Being a mami is so wonderful! There is so much I am thankful for being able to experience every single day. There are also times, however, when it may be stressful, and perhaps a few things on this list will help keep it all in perspective. Welcome to mamihood!

Do you have anything you would add to this list? Have you ever had some experiences you would like to share with other new mamis that might be of help? Please feel free to leave a comment in the space below! Thanks for reading!

 

Encouraging Empowered Mamis Everywhere To Do What They Do

Mami

Mami is an artist, aspiring entrepreneur, and first-time, full-time mother. She enjoys long walks with Mr. Sweetie, good food and cooking, her family and dear friends, writing, arting and crafting. She doesn't know everything, but wants to learn, and loves to do research and share what she finds. She thinks life is like a box of puzzle pieces: you keep trying until it fits, because every piece has its place. She owns and operates whatever she sets her mind to, and knows that the sky is only the limit if you haven't left the ground yet.

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