Creating Special Memories
Too many parents spend their baby's first few weeks carrying out tasks that could have been dealt with before the birth. Birth announcement and thank you cards can be partially filled out in advance, with spaces left to add names and dates. Luna, a first time mum of twins, suggests planning enough meals to survive the early weeks. "I wrote out nearly two month's worth of easy meal plans before my babies were born, including lists of necessary ingredients. It took a while but I saved so much time in the long run."
The early days of getting to know a new baby are tiring enough without trying to figure out how to get the steriliser to work or remember where you put the baby grows. Make sure you organise your home so that any essential baby gear is kept close at hand and ensure that you experiment with any new gadgets before your baby arrives. Knowing where everything is will make your life easier and help you care for your baby more efficiently.
Take it easy
Your baby may be the most important person in the universe, but you do matter too. If you don't take care of yourself, how will you be able to look after someone else? The period after birth shouldn't be about getting back to 'normality' or trying to regain your pre-pregnancy figure, it should be about resting and recovering from the birth. Give yourself time to adjust to your new role and remember that you are in the middle of an incredible life changing experience.
You may have a small mob of well-wishers beating at your door, but that doesn't mean you have to let them all in. New mums have the right to be exhausted, over-protective and even a little selfish.
"After bringing our eldest daughter home, my husband and I decided to hide out in our bedroom for two weeks," says Emma, a mum of two. "We kept the curtains shut and ignored the doorbell when anyone came to the house. It did feel a bit anti-social, but we wanted to spend that time getting to know our baby, not entertaining guests."
If you really must let auntie Jean and your mum's best friend into your home, make sure you choose a time that is best for your new family. You don't need to try and please everyone – they will forgive you!
No time in your life will pass more quickly than your baby's first six weeks. Cherish the early days by being with your little one as much as possible. Enjoy their silky soft skin and brief moments of wide-eyed alertness rather than worrying about the state of the bathroom -- there will be plenty of time for cleaning later. And if the mess really starts to pile up, why not delegate chores to all those eager visitors that keep appearing on your doorstep?