You have left the comfort of the staff and nurses at the hospital and now you are on your way home. You start to look at your precious newborn baby and realize that, one- you’re immensely blessed and two- you’re scared out of your mind. You and your partner are responsible for this little human and all sort of emotions are running through your mind right now. Girl! I’ve been there twice! Yes because even if it’s your first, second or third time around, it’s still scary. That’s why these 15 realistic tips to survive the first week with a newborn is so crucial, it will help you immensely.
The first week of having your newborn baby at home is the most overwhelming, nerve-wracking and emotional week you will ever experience. Why? Because you’re getting to know your baby, you’re figuring out what is a good feeding and sleeping schedule, The waking up every two hours in a half to feed your baby and most importantly getting used to the responsibility and everything that it entails of being a mom. It can be rough but I don’t want to scare you. I promise it will get better each day.
I want you to enjoy these precious moments of being with your newborn, of bonding with your baby and savoring the fact that you and your partner are now a family of 3, 4 or 5. Yes, it may feel like you are barely surviving the first week but these realistic tips will in fact help you survive the first week with a newborn. I did it twice and the second time around it was with twins!
15 realistic tips to help you survive the first week with a newborn
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Please accept any help that is being offered, trust me you are going to need it. Don’t try to be superwoman at this time and simply enjoy the help that is being given to you. If you have visitors over and they are carrying your baby, take this time to maybe take a quick shower, have your baby’s formula ready or even pump in another room for a couple of minutes.
You see? Having help around is amazing and you will greatly benefit from it.
You can also start this newborn basics class online. Where it will help you feel confident in knowing what to do to care for your baby. Very detailed information with step by step guides! How to change baby’s diaper, take baby a bath, sleeping tips, umbilical cord care and more!
2. Ask for help
Do not hesitate to ask for help whenever you need it. Ask your partner to help you with changing the baby’s diapers or heating up your baby’s formula. If you have family or friends over (depending on how close you are with them) ask them to feed the baby while you do something else, or if they can run to store to pick up more diapers or wipes. You get the point, do not hesitate to ask your family and friends who are willing to help,to help you.
3. Develop a schedule for your baby
One of the first things that you should master is having an effective sleeping and eating schedule for your baby. This will help you stay sane and have a routine. It’s always great when you have a routine because it will help you stay organized and also you’re not going to be wondering around about what the baby needs.
For example, if you start to put your baby down for a nap at 11am and you see that your newborn is getting fussy and uncomfortable around that time. You now know that it’s your baby’s nap time. It’s really a savior. You can keep track of your baby’s sleeping and eating schedule with this cute baby tracker!
4. Have baby’s items organized
You must have your baby’s items neatly organized either in your room, baby’s nursery or both! Have a designated area where you have the diapers and wipes easily accessible to you and your partner. Have a basket filled with basics, like diaper rash ointment, baby shampoo, baby oil, hair brush etc.
This baby diaper and nursery storage organizer does the trick, you can even hang it on the crib! You may also like this nursery organization bin that can later be used as a toy storage once baby is older.
You may be thinking that I have lost my mind ( even though I think I have after having three kids) but please listen to me here. You need to rest in order to survive the first week with a newborn. If your baby is sleeping, then sleep mama, there is nothing wrong with it. You need your rest because you are still recovering from childbirth. Listen to your body, rest, lay down, take it easy. Specially if you have family over helping you 🙂
6. Have a baby monitor wherever baby sleeps
I loved loved having a baby monitor because it just gave me peace of mind knowing that I could be in the kitchen washing my baby’s bottles while looking at them sleep through the monitor. It’s amazing! It also saves you the hassle of going back and forth to check on the baby, while you’re in the living room enjoying your favorite television show.
You will hear noises all of the time once you’re a mom. You are going to “hear” your baby cry when you are taking a shower, cooking, doing laundry and to only find out that your baby wasn’t really crying. It’s crazy! Do yourself a favor and buy this baby monitor.
7. Shower/get dressed
Do you know what made my postpartum and surviving my first week with a newborn that much manageable? You guessed it! Taking a shower everyday and getting dressed. It really lifted my mood, I was happier, I had a positive outlook on the day and I felt refreshed. Try it, it’s amazing what a quick shower can do 😉
8. Invest in a rocking chair
I didn’t have a rocking chair with my first pregnancy, but I did have one the second time around with my newborn twins. It literally saved me my sanity, happiness and I survived my first week with newborn babies less stressed. Having a rocking chair makes it easier for you to sleep your baby, for you to nurse (if you’re nursing your baby) and for you to cuddle with your baby. It’s a total win in my books! I think you’re going to love this one! (I had a similar one)
9. Have something to look forward to everyday
Do you have a favorite t.v show, blog or book? Then make it a point to watch or read it either when you are feeding or nursing your baby, or while your baby sleeps. You still need to find things that makes you happy and not feel like you’re a walking zombie.It’s not good to feel like all you do is change poopy diapers, feed and sleep the baby. You need to do things that you enjoy too.
10. Order take out
Please do not feel bad or beat yourself down because you’re not cooking a nice meal right after getting home from the hospital. Listen to me, your body is going through so many changes right now, your mind and soul are going through so many changes and the last thing that you need to think about is “what am I going to cook”? Order out from your favorite restaurant for a couple of days, who cares? If you have freezer meals ready to go, then that’s is awesome!
If friends and family members ask you what they should take when visiting, kindly ask them for umm.. food!? Yes please! You need to eat, your partner needs to eat, everybody needs to eat. I actually didn’t cook the first week after bringing home all three of my babies from the hospital (singleton and twin pregnancy). My mom and aunts did all the cooking for me, which I was extremely blessed and thankful for.
11. Involve your partner
Mother instinct might kick in immediately for you once your baby is born, or even during your pregnancy. But, your partner may have a longer time stepping into the father role. How about you help him and tell him what to do. Do not assume that your partner should know everything that you need help in or what your baby needs. Simply ask him to help and involve him in anything that you can involve him in. for example bottle feeding, changing diapers, heating the baby’s formula, or warming up the water for your baby’s first bath.
12. This season of life will pass
One thing that you should remember is that this too shall pass. The sleep deprived days, the non stop crying, the feeling of not knowing what to do, everything will pass. Each day you will feel more comfortable, you will master an effective schedule for you and your baby and you will be the queen of figuring out why your baby is crying. Motherhood has different seasons and the one that you are living right now will soon pass.
13. Take time to care for yourself
Let’s not forget here that you my friend, just gave birth to your beautiful baby or babies. You need to take care of yourself, whether you gave birth via C-section or vaginally. Your body still went through some major changes and now it’s trying to recover. Give your body a break and take care of it. Follow your doctor’s instructions, eat healthy balanced meals, do not lift heavy objects, drink plenty of water, etc. You will see how you will recover from childbirth fast and smoothly.
Your health and well being is important.
14. Do not put pressure on yourself
Take it one day at a time. Do not put so much pressure on yourself and just go with the flow. If at this very moment you aren’t successful in breastfeeding your baby, then try tomorrow or call a specialist. Do not think you’re the worst mother in the world because you’re not. Do not compare your experience as a first time mom to others, everyone is different. Every baby is different, some babies sleep through the night the first week, others need sleep training. It’s okay mom. You are doing just fine, you will learn the ropes of being a mom and most importantly you will learn how to parent and mother your way.
15. Enjoy it
Enjoy these precious moments, I’m telling you it will pass by so fast. I find myself wishing I could turn back time when my kids were babies to hug them, kiss them and enjoy them. Not that I didn’t, but you always want to do it one more time, you know? It’s amazing how quickly babies grow and before you know it, your baby is starting to crawl and eat solid food. Having a newborn home is sometimes tiring but you won’t get those days back. Enjoy it mama 🙂
Surviving the first week with a newborn comes with it’s challenges and full swing of different emotions. You and your partner are learning the ropes of taking care of your newborn baby. All while you’re also taking care of yourself and trying to recover from childbirth. It can be difficult but it can also be manageable. You can survive the first week with your newborn, it is possible.
Remember to enjoy and savor these moments because it really does go by pretty fast. Newborns require a lot of attention and it’s okay to spoil your baby with love. Wether it’s your first child or third child, these realistic tips to help you survive the first week with a newborn will be useful to you. Keep in mind to :
- Accept help
- Ask for help
- Develop a schedule for baby
- Have baby items organized
- Rest and more rest
- Invest in a baby monitor
- Take a shower and get dressed
- Rocking chair to the rescue
- Have something to look forward to during the day
- Order take out
- Involve your partner
- This season of life will pass
- Care for yourself
- Do not put pressure on yourself
- Enjoy it mama!
I hope you found these tips super helpful in surviving your first week with your newborn. How did you survive the newborn phase?