I’m a new and first-time mom. If you need proof, just check my Google search history. What did parents do before the Internet? It’s amazing, there are generations that not only survived but thrived before the interwebs existed.When we realized that ready-or-not, this baby was coming; we thought it wise to educate ourselves. My husband and I are what some people may call cheap. We prefer the term thrifty. We started researching birthing classes at our hospital and come to find out, the class was for a full Saturday and cost $170! Can you believe that?! $170 bucks on a Saturday during flag football season. Yeah right! So we did the next best thing… YouTube.
Y’all don’t. Just don’t. No matter how much money you’re trying to save, don’t YouTube birth.
Lesson One was in the books. Needless to say we paid for the class.
Our daughter is now eight months old and we are still learning lessons every day.
Lesson Two: Don’t buy a diaper bag, spring for the rolling luggage instead.
I did it. I bought the cute diaper bag and like a true southerner had it monogrammed. The only problem is how quickly that bag fills up! Every time you leave the house with a newborn, it’s like you’re packing for the airport! Diapers? Check! Bottle? Check! Spare outfit? Check! Second spare outfit? Check! Passport? Check! Inevitably you will forget something and your baby will know exactly what that something is and need it the second you put your car in drive. It’s their sixth sense.
Lesson Three: Get used to the taste of “I’m sorry”.
Hormones. That’s all I really need to say but I’ll elaborate a little more. You and your spouse are going through a world of change! It has been, by far, one of the happiest times of my life but also one of the most emotionally unpredictable times of my life. My husband is wonderful, supportive, kind, and apparently an incredibly loud chip eater. For the love! Didn’t you read the sign on the door? The one that says, “I’m in a mood today. Don’t crunch your chips and salsa anywhere near me.” I gave you a warning. What warning he asks? I had a baby.
I have never had to apologize for so many irrational things in my life. I think it’s ok to be irrational, just as long as you recognize you’re crazy and apologize.
Lesson Four: Don’t worry about what other people think.
I am relearning the meaning of humility on a daily basis. My daughter, since birth, has passed gas like a 50-year-old man. I’m not exaggerating in the slightest. And that’s not the embarrassing part. Her timing on these atom bombs is impeccable. We will roam around a nearly empty store for an hour…nothing. But the second we go to checkout she blows it up. I have to polish my rose-colored glasses every time I mouth to the cashier, “It was the baby…” as they smile and nod while giving me the “Are-you-really-trying-to-blame-the-baby?” face. Don’t let the opinion of others get under your skin. It’s ok if I care about other people and their thoughts because that means I respect them. The problem happens when we use other’s viewpoints or opinions to determine our worth. Our worth as a parent is not contingent on someone else’s approval.
Lesson Five: Don’t compare yourself to other parents.
Every person has different opinions, ideas, methods, theories, and advice about how you should raise your child. And by all means, listen and get ideas! But you know your child, your circumstances, and God designed you to be the parent to your child. I love getting ideas and advice from other friends that are moms, but I pray for discernment for what to do in our home.
Also, remember that social media doesn’t give the whole picture. It’s so easy for us to look at others and think their life is all rainbows compared to our train wreck. But remember, that picture is just a snapshot. One second in a day made up of 86,400 more. Give yourself grace and know that you are the best parent for your child no matter how many “likes” you get.
Katie is married to Daniel and together they are figuring out how to walk in this new world of parenting! Katie isn't too complicated... She's obsessed with birthday cake Oreos, loves a good yoga pant, and is impressively skilled at driving in reverse.