Thank you to all my wonderful mama friends for contributing to this post by sharing your personal experiences and sage advice for new mothers ♥

  • Listen, and look into the eyes of your child. He or she will tell you what they need.
  • Consider joining a new mothers group and/or breastfeeding support group like La Leche League. It is a place to find understanding, sisterhood, knowledge and support. Together you can problem-solve and share the wisdom that you collectively have as mothers of newborns.
  • You may not bond with your baby immediately and that is okay.
  • Your mood affects your baby’s mood. If you’re feeling anxious, stressed or overwhelmed, take a few minutes to breathe and reset your energy.
  • Nobody knows your child the way you do. Trust yourself always and your instincts.
  • When my babe has a meltdown, stepping outside for some fresh air makes everything alright in his world.
  • Breastfeeding doesn’t always just magically happen.  It may take some effort but is mutually beneficial in so many ways. The bonding time is absolutely priceless, and truly a moment to treasure.  If it is something you desire, please don’t give up without getting help and support.
  • Have fun with your kids, laugh with them, make memories. Children remember having fun more than they remember having things. When they’re older, they will look back and remember fun things you did together, not the expensive parties, designer clothes or fancy toys they had.
  • You WILL mess up. It’s OK. There is no such thing as the perfect parent.
  • Don’t be too dogmatic towards any one direction. I learned the most important thing is being open and going with the flow.
  • Take a ton of pictures. They really, truly grow up way too fast & you’ll be so happy with all the seemingly redundant, interesting-to-no-one-else-but-you pictures.
  • Above all else, you and your baby are the most important concern ~ be together, sleep together, look at each other, snuggle skin to skin, enjoy each other.
  • Be okay with saying “this is what works for us” when folks give their advice on how you should change or do things their way. Listen to all the advice but only do what you feel is best for your family.
  • Ask for help and accept it when it’s offered – whatever it is, lactation consultant, asking for someone to bring meals (check out Meal Baby), letting messes pile up, hiring someone if you can, etc.  It’s okay not to be able to do it all. When they say it takes a village, sometimes it literally does.
  • I learned not to be judgmental of other mom’s parenting choices and not letting judgy moms affect my choices.
  • Take photos, get their feet and hand printed and make notes in a book for your babe ~ little letters are good. Don’t stress over having a perfect scrap book, something is better than nothing.
  • Find a special song to sing to your little one.
  • When something seems fishy, don’t necessarily Google it! You might be freaked out more than necessary.
  • If you have a partner, it’s so important to get them involved straight away. It’s easy to feel left out and insignificant at this stage. Get them to help with bathing, changing diapers, swaddling, and feeding if that applies. Make a point of encouraging them – tell them they’re doing a great job, even if you might have done a better job with the diaper!
  • I had post-partum depression, and I had no idea. I wish I had been better informed about what needs attention. The women in my community encouraged me to get help and I went to a wonderful homeopath and could not believe how much better I was after she began to treat me.
  • It’s easy to really let yourself go and difficult for a lot of women to “get your mojo back.” Don’t be so hard on yourself. There must be forgiveness and balance with all of it.
  • Just when you think you got your kids figured out, they move on to the next thing. I mastered diapers and now my daughter is onto pull-ups. Or I found the right way to swaddle and now my son is rolling over and can’t be swaddled anymore.
  • Everyone says this one for a reason… sleep when the baby sleeps!
  • To keep your relationship strong when two become three, I would say this: Be gentle with each other. Be patient. Recognize that parenting really is a full-time job, and work out between you how you can work together and share the load.
  • Take care of yourself. We get so busy taking care of our tiny, precious one that we sometimes forget about ourselves. Make sure you are eating well and drinking enough water.
  • It’s okay to not get everything done in one day like you used to prior to having baby. Chores and errands can wait.
  • Do something nice for yourself every single day.
  • Be the person you want your children to be…because they are always watching.
  • Don’t be too hard on yourself. You are doing the best you can.
  • Kiss and hug them as much as you can.  Savor every single moment possible. It goes by far too fast.

Image credit: Kate m. Berggren

Do you have some words of wisdom to share? Please add to the list by commenting below!