Expecting for the first time brings out a lot of emotions altogether. You will be excited, happy, nervous, stressed, anxious – all at the same time. Growing a human being, bringing him into this world and taking care of him does make you plan and plot vigorously right from the start. And not to forget the pressure that has built around the moms and dads to do everything in a perfect manner. But, after all, there is just so much you can do. Being a first-time mom, there are a few things you might miss out on. Here are 17 Mistakes First Time Pregnant Moms can make.
#1 Buying a Whole Lot of Newborn Diapers
Not all babies need newborn diapers. Yes, it’s true. Some babies are born bigger than others and in that case, they won’t need newborn diapers. Or in some cases, babies grow out of newborn diapers in 2-3 weeks. And for some babies, they might be comfortable with newborn sized diapers for as long as 2 months. So, stocking on a whole lot of size 1 diapers will do no good to you. The best way to get out of this is to just buy 1 packet of size 1 diapers for start. You can ask your hubby or anyone close to you to order diapers later on. Otherwise, all the hospitals do provide newborn sized diapers, so, you don’t have to worry about running out of them.
#2 Not Mustering Enough Help & Support From Loved Ones
There might be times when you are very tired and just don’t want to come out of bed. These days are very common, especially in the first and third trimester. First trimester’s most prominent symptoms include tiredness and fatigue. Plus if you are experiencing severe morning sickness, it might not be easy to go into the kitchen and make something for yourself. Similarly, in the third trimester, you will have pelvic pain and back ache. Sometimes, these symptoms can really make it sickening to get up and do anything. You will also need constant support at the time of breastfeeding and postpartum. So, it’s better that you have friends and family who are there for you as and when you need them. Emotional support is also important throughout your journey.
#3 Cutting Out Caffeine Completely
Caffeine is not good for your baby – True! But completely cutting it off can lead to caffeine withdrawal symptoms like nausea, dizziness, and headaches, Also, having 1-2 cups of coffee or chai a day is just fine unless and until you are not consuming caffeine in other forms like cocoa, sodas etc. Caffeine can cross the placenta and over 200 mg a day can have serious effects on the development of the fetus.
But, as with everything else, you should discuss caffeine consumption with your doctor and also listen to yourself. In some cases, women drink more than 200 mg cups a day and they have a normal healthy pregnancy. The thing is, there is no particular study that has been done which we can rely on completely. So, 200 mg quantity is just an average amount set by many doctors and physicians around.
#4 Not Working Out Just Because You were in Good Shape Before
Working out and exercising during pregnancy is very important. Exercising helps in combating many problems such as sleep apnea, swelling, backaches, swelling and mood swings. Squats, in particular, helps to prepare your pelvic region for delivery as they help in strengthening, stretching and elongating the bones around the pelvis. Working out will also help to prevent flabs and jiggly muscles post pregnancy.
#5 Announcing Good News on Social Media Way Before
Sure, you want to share the good new with your friends and family as soon as you can. But, wait until the 12-week mark. Chance of a miscarriage reduces to less than 10% after the second-week mark. Not to forget that there are things that could go wrong after that too, but then possibilities are endless and we can’t rely on it forever.
#6 Stocking Way Too Many Baby Clothes
It’s okay to stock on some essentials like bibs, onesies, sleepsuits, receiving blankets etc. But, buying too much in the same size is not a good option. The problem is same as it is with the baby diapers. Babies grow out of sizes very quickly and every baby is different. Some babies might not fit into newborn size clothes while some would be comfy in the newborn size clothes for longer than you would have thought. So, prepare to shop online or find someone to do shopping for you. Stock on baby clothes after they are here as you will also have an idea on what you and your baby needs more.
#7 Trying to Be Perfect All the Time
With the growth of social media and various social media influencers, it becomes quite difficult to differentiate between how their social media life and real life differs. And sadly, many people tend to forget that even though their social media portrays a very perfect and happy picture, their real life might not be much different to ours. They have their own problems and struggles and so do we. You will do research, read books, try to fight your real self to be as perfect as possible. But, that’s not possible. As the saying goes, ‘There is no way to be a perfect mother, but a million ways to be a good one’.
#8 Not Taking Enough Maternity Pictures
You should do as much photography as possible. Normal, candid and casual pictures work just as fine as professional photography. Because once your little cherub will be out in your hands, every picture and every memory will become special. So, it’s never too late for that last maternity shoot. Just go for it.
#9 Neglecting HIM
According to a research, communication gap can increase to as much as 90% in couples and in some couples, this remains permanent. Keeping your love and romance alive is very crucial and contributes to the healthy development of the child too. Plan beforehand on the number of date nights and trips you are going to go on alone after the baby is here. Finding time to stick together, talking to each other, communicating with each other can help a lot in keeping the romance alive.
Also, make sure that you assign some tasks of parenting to your hubby too like bedtime baths, bathing etc. This is a great way for the father to bond with the child.
#10 Not Preparing for Breastfeeding
Breastfeeding needs support and help, especially at the start. It doesn’t come naturally and easily to everyone. Have a lactation consultant over just to make sure everything is fine. Some problems might have deeper roots, which you might not notice. Also, having friends or family who has had prior experience in breastfeeding can help. Sometimes, you will have a better solution when you talk to them.
#11 Preparing for nursery, baby clothes but not LABOR
When the nesting instincts kick in all you want to do is buy baby clothes, prepare diaper bag, buying cute pacifier clips, nursing covers, shopping cart covers and what not. And between all this, you forget that for the baby to use all this, he first has come out of somewhere after undergoing a long process of labor and delivery. We can safely say that preparing for labor and childbirth does make you a lot less anxious and worried about what’s going to happen.
#12 Not buying formula and bottles before baby arrives
Breastfeeding is hard and there are so many challenges along the journey like engorgement, soreness, latching problems, nipple bleeding etc. Sometimes, it becomes difficult to feed with all these problems, which are accompanied by dealing with postpartum recovery too. Having formula and bottles ready makes it easier on you to deal with these problems. And it’s okay to give a bottle or two of formula to the baby.
#13 Not visiting a Therapist especially during Postpartum
Almost 80% of all the moms suffer from baby blues and mood swings during their postpartum. There are more than 10 million cases of PPD in India each year. Sadly, a lot of them remains untreated due to the stigma that exists in our society surrounding mental problems. Signs of PPD and baby blues are often the same, so it’s very difficult to distinguish between them without the help of a medical professional. Do visit a therapist one or more times depending on how you feel mentally. It’s completely okay to see a therapist at least once after labor and delivery.
#14 Sticking to a Birth Plan No Matter What
Don’t get us wrong, we are not judging on anyone’s decisions to go for unmedicated delivery, water birth or a home birth. It’s just that sometimes things don’t work out the way you want to. You might have to change your course as needed. Having a birth plan is okay, but if the time requires you might have to compromise on some decisions of yours.
#15 Comparing Your Pregnancy and Parenting Journey to Other Moms
No 2 parents or 2 mums or 2 dads will ever have the same journey, so just comparing your problems and challenges to your friend’s or a social media influencer will not do any good to you. Drawing from their experiences is different than comparing yourself to their experiences. You just have to accept that if they have had something very easily, you might won’t and vice-versa.
#16 Judging Yourself Just Because your Baby is Crying!
Out of all the moms, God chose you to be your baby’s mom, because there is no perfect combination. He knows that you do fit the best together. He chose YOU. Believe in God and most importantly, believe in yourself. It’s okay if sometimes you get angry or frustrated and are not able to fulfill your responsibilities to perfection as a parent. But, hey! Parenting is just like everything else. You can’t be perfect at it. And there is no perfect parent in the whole world. An important thing to realize is no parent would ever deliberately want to do something that is not good for the baby. There will be a time when you will neglect yourself more than your baby. And there are so many more sacrifices that needs to be done, which you are doing selflessly.
Babies cry due to a myriad of reasons and sometimes, there is no reason at all. They might be fussy, colicky, going through a wonder week phase or just are bored. You never know what’s on their mind. So, don’t worry.
#17 Not Asking for Alone Time
As much as you deserve to have constant support and help from people around, you. Spending alone time is crucial too and not just during pregnancy but after you have a baby. Have a day off to yourself or with your girlfriends, let your husband or any other closed one babysit your baby. Pamper yourself, do some shopping and enjoy your day. Moms often neglect themselves while doing so much for their family. Spending alone time rejuvenates that energy and makes you feel good about yourself.
What do you think about these mistakes? Did you make any of them? What was your experience like? Tell us in the Comments section below.