Monday, 15 August 2011

What one tip would you give a new mum?

I was at a pregnancy yoga class this weekend and it was a different instructor covering the class. She talked a lot more than the other yoga teachers I'm used to and as the class was mostly made up of women expecting their first babies she was giving out some advice and tips, based her own experience. She said the best piece of advice she was given was to tell anyone who visits you and the new baby to bring a meal for you because you shouldn't need to look after guests when you're busy looking after a newborn.

I remember reading that tip somewhere when I was pregnant first time round but let's be honest, are we really going to demand a meal from every visitor? If I think about my own relatives and friends, that's not just going to work with everyone. One of my aunts loves babies but she's never had children of her own, she hates cooking and I dread to think what she might bring me if I insisted she brought us a meal! For my friends who don't yet have children, it's impossible for them to understand how difficult it is to make a meal when you're feeding, changing and looking after a newborn and trying to get some rest yourself. Yes, I could ask them to bring me a meal but it's not in my nature to make demands of my friends. With friends who have children, it's a different story and I think several of them would have the thought to bring food of their own accord.

As well as thinking about that particular tip, I then got to thinking about what my top tip would be to a new mum / mum-to-be. It's tough to pick just one piece of advice and once you've experienced those first weeks and months with a baby, you soon learn all kinds of things you had no idea about previously.

When you're in the thick of it, it can be hard to recognise that everything is just a passing stage that soon gets forgotten - the horrendous sleepless nights, the constant chain of feeding, nappy changing, clothes washing that seems to leave you no time for even the basic day-to-day tasks of showering or eating, the teething, the crying, the whatever all passes! Even when you feel like you can't take any more, you get through it and then it's all over and things seem much brighter again. It's worth remembering that when you feel like you've hit rock bottom so I think something along those lines would be a tip I would give a new mum.

Looking over a past post here on Mummy Zen that I wrote when my son turned one, I see I included the above point as one thing I learnt from my first year of motherhood and nearly two years later,  I still stand by the other things I listed too.

What would your top tip be for a new mum / a mum-to-be? What piece of advice do you wish someone had told you before you had children?
Photo credit


  1. funny, I don't remember the first 2 years being all that bad. I had good sleepers, I guess. Three pieces of advice and the first will not be popular. 1) Don't feed the baby "on demand". Sometimes an infant cries and it's not for food. I kept to the 3 hour rule with A LOT of flexibility. sometimes it meant holding my son for 30 minutes while singing and rocking him but NOT feeding him yet. It allowed him to calm down without eating, which is a good message for the years ahead. 2) low light and whispers only when you're up at night. Bright light and nice voices in the morning. They get the message very quickly. 3)Nap when they nap. It's tempting to catch up when they're asleep but try to avoid it. And love, love, love, yourself and the new little soul. ?

  2. Great tips Maryse - thank you! I didn't mean to imply the first two years as being really bad but I do think the first few months of motherhood can be a bit overwhelming :-).


Thank you for reading. I'd love to have your comments and thoughts!