In the few days, right after I gave birth, I remember feeling a ton of emotions — most of them were good, yet some were admittedly negative. I felt unfathomable love for my new baby and at the same time, overwhelming sadness for unexplainable worries. I sometimes felt that I was going crazy. But after talking to other mom-friends, some of them, new moms themselves, I realized most new moms go through the same emotional roller-coaster ride.
So, if you’re a new mom yourself, then let me share with you some common new mom emotions or stresses and what-worked-for-me wisdom that somehow helped me cope with them.
I want to cry whenever my baby cries — which is for the most part of every day!
Newborns can only do a number of things — eat, sleep, poop, pee, and cry. So it’s quite understandable to feel that they don’t do anything other than cry all the time. It’s normal for moms to stress and freak once the wailing starts, and it can take nerves of steel to not let it get to you. But one thing I learned that helped me cope with all the crying is that babies do not die from crying and it’s also not going to hurt them. So it’s ok that we don’t pick our baby up right away once he/she starts crying. Although yes, we can also try doing it the other way and be at his/her beck and call once the waterworks start, but trust me, we’ll be hard-pressed to do anything for ourselves if we do so consistently. Even as moms, we need a few minutes or even hours each day for ourselves (to take a bath and other hygiene concerns) to stay sane. So don’t stress yourself out and know that it’s ok to not pick him/her up every time he/she cries.
Also, bear in mind that crying is the only way that babies can communicate and it doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re sad and or hurt. It can mean that they’re hungry, tired, bored, wet, or overstimulated. So instead of worrying that something is wrong with your child or that you’re not a good mom, think of your baby’s cries as his/her way to talk and communicate with you.
I love my baby, but sometimes I hate him/her!
Ok, breathe a few times and know that this too, is normal and all moms have felt the same way. A lot of new moms think that the only thing they can feel for their new baby is love and joy over being a new parent, but of course, this is a bit idealistic at best. We have to admit that being a mom is hard work and entails a LOT of duties and sacrifices (forever!) — so hence, it is normal for moms to feel some level of ambivalence toward her child and her overwhelming responsibilities.
What helped me cope with this feeling is this parenting quote: The days are long but the years are short. It means that we might feel that the days are too long most of the time when our kids are a newborn or a baby because of all the things we have to do and all the time spent on caring for him/her. But if you look at it from a bigger perspective, your child’s first year is such a small piece of your life — sooner or later, he/she will grow up to be a toddler, a kid, a teen, and then an adult. While you might feel like a zombie because your child doesn’t want to sleep anywhere except on your shoulder while standing, always remember that this is not forever. Those few months spent as a zombie-mommy-baby-rocker is but a small part of your and your child’s life. After a few years, he/she will want to sleep on his/her own and there’s no going back to that precious feeling of how he/she needs your shoulder and hug to fall asleep.
I don’t know what I’m doing most of the time!
It’s normal to feel clueless as a new parent and it’s understandable that you want to do it right. So most of the time, this can result to new moms just handing over the parenting reins to the “expert” closest to her — which can be her mom or mom-in-law, instead of believing and doing what she believes is right and being the mom she actually is.
As a new mom, you should know that no one knows your baby better than you. So it’s best to trust this fact and go with your gut. If you meet a parenting challenge, you can try out whatever you think will work best. Then if it doesn’t work out, you can consult your doctor or your trusty set of mom-friends.
The only way to know what kind of a mom you are is to be confident enough to take that first leap and shape yourself as a new parent. Always remember that every mom is different and yet each is perfect for his/her own child.
I’m worried that I’m not caring for my baby enough.
Along with feeling clueless, a lot of new moms also worry that they are not doing enough or are making a mistake in caring for their kids. This includes worrying over whether they’re using the right products for their baby.
The good news is, new moms can check off newborn skincare concerns thanks to Baby Dove. Only new Baby Dove contains 1/4 moisturizing cream, which moisturizes baby’s skin making it soft and smooth after every bath.
Ultimately, it’s best for new moms to remember that there’s no right or wrong way when it comes to parenting, and that each mom is the best in the eyes of their child. But when it comes to caring for their baby’s skin, #RealMoms agree — Baby Dove goes beyond mildness to moisturize baby’s skin.
*Published with Baby Dove.