7 Things They Don't Tell You About The First Two Weeks
When Harrison was born, everyone took pride in putting in their there two cents. It's a right of passage for a new mum, everyone imparts wisdom from their own cushy newborn days, and I'm under no false allusions that I'll probably do the same. I was warned of the meconium poos, the lack of sleep, the endless torrent of visitors and told my mothers instinct would be come naturally. In a way, yes, this was all true, but there was a lot I didn't know about the first fortnight with a newborn, and a lot that probably would have been good to know.
1. Mothers instinct isn't always obvious.
Your mothers instinct will come naturally/You know best/It'll just come to you.
I walked out of that hospital absolutely clueless. All but kicked out 6 hours after I had him, with not so much as a quick lesson in how to change a nappy. I'm not around babies often, last time I held a newborn would have been my brother 11 years ago, and even then that was fleeting given that I didn't really want anything to do with him. I was never a maternal person, so this idea that just having a baby meant I'd suddenly have a wealth of knowledge at my disposal was crazy, and it didn't really happen that way. The first night was spent with me and Jordan googling everything. Is it normal if my baby wants fed again? Is it normal if my baby isn't feeding every three hours? My baby's poo is black, should it be black? How do I burp a baby? Why do I burp a baby? The simplest things that a mum should know, I didn't, and it's easy to think that your not prepared enough if you don't know. The reality is that you'll learn everyday and slowly but surely I'm getting to grips with being a mum. Yes, you'll know your own child the best, but that doesn't mean you'll know everything in the first two weeks. It's ok to not have a clue, and I wish I'd known that in the first two weeks.
2. There will be a torrent of visitors - but you don't have to see them.
This was the biggie for me. Everyone said that the visitors would be endless, and that they were. But no one really told me how much of an effect it would actually have. I suppose it's because everyone handles it differently - I didn't really handle it well. For the first few days, we'd have people in the house from ten in the morning, and there would normally still be someone there at nine at night. To everyone it's just an hour visit, but for you it's eight hours on the go non-stop, and sometimes it does just get too much. I don't like saying no to people, and didn't do it at all for the first two weeks. It wasn't until Jordan was back at work and I found myself hiding in a cupboard with Harrison from people ringing the doorbell that I realised I'd probably hit rock bottom with the visitors. Asking people to wait a few days until I was back on my feet a bit more was the best thing we could have done there, and I felt so much more in control just for doing that. Don't get me wrong, I'm so happy that Harrison had so many people that love him already and wanted to see him, but when your already run down, everything gets on top of you so quickly. If I'm honest, from the get go I should have said no visitors for the first week and taken the time with little chunk, but you don't think of that at the time. For my own sanity though, it probably would have been best.
3. Every baby is different.
Don't believe what you read on the internet.
Again, everyone wants to tell you exactly what worked for them and how it will work for your child too. Already, I've been told to switch my milk to certain brands that are full proof, to change my bottles or teets to better ones, how I should get Harrison to sleep better, how I should sleep better. It's so easy to take what everyone says as bible, but let's face it, every baby is different and what works for someone else won't always work for you. Just because one hundred people are preaching something on a forum doesn't mean that it'll work for your one child, and likewise, just because it's how your mum done it doesn't mean it's how it has to be done. I'll learn my own ways that suit Harrison, rather than what suits everyone else, but that won't happen in just two weeks.
4. It's not always possible to sleep while the baby is sleeping.