I knew becoming a mom would be an adjustment and have challenges, as well as rewards of course, but I think I was a little naive. Okay, really naive.
When I was expecting my first child I had my maternity leave all planned out. Along with spending quality time with my daughter interacting, learning and reading books together, I’d practice my yoga, learn a new recipe or two and work on my writing.
Then reality hit!
Through a lot of trial and error and a few tears I did learn a few things that first year, many tips that helped with coping with my next two children:
- Get on a daycare list right away. Even if you’re only thinking about returning to work, get yourself on a daycare list as soon as you can. Daycare spots, good daycare spots, are hard to come by. And don’t limit it to just one daycare. I was on five wait lists but only one came available when my leave was up.
- Establish a bedtime routine early. Whether it’s a bath and a story or a message and a song, create a nighttime routine with your child and practice it daily. I didn’t have a regular routine for my first born and I think that made getting her to sleep at night difficult.
- Every child is different. Having learned from my first born there are certainly things I did differently with my other two kids. But each child is different so don’t stress over the fact that something that worked with one child doesn’t work with another.
- Set a realistic daily goal for yourself. At home with a baby it seems like you’ll have all sorts of free time, but kids require a lot of attention and energy. When planning your day limit your schedule to just one thing, like getting the laundry done or vacuuming the living room. It may not seem like much but between feeding and napping and playing and diapering you’ll find your day quickly disappears. Having one item on your schedule that you can accomplish won’t seem overwhelming.
Share Your Advice and Win
I’m sure you learned a few things from raising your own kids. Or maybe there are a few things you wish other parents shared with you before you became a parent yourself. Pampers realizes how hard it is to be a new parent so they are creating Tip Sheets full of useful information and they need your help. They’re looking to you, the experts, for your best parenting tips to include. Visit Mom Central’s site and share either your best tip for parents returning to work or sleep tips for mom and baby and it might just appear in the ‘A Parent is Born’ collection for new parents to read. Plus you’ll also be entered to win one of twenty-five $20 gift cards or the grand prize of $500 cash. But be quick, Mom Central is only accepting tips until December 10, 2009 so get yours in now.
I wrote this post while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central and received gift to thank me for taking the time to participate.