Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Things They Don't Tell You About Caring for an Infant, Part 4

The final installment of the series:

There are plenty of things to learn about caring for an infant, but the things you need to know most are in this post.  Please read it!

1) You're never going to know exactly how to handle each situation that arises.  You can research, ask your friends, or ask your mom, but the most important thing is that you do what feels right to you.

2) Each child is different. Your first baby probably won't behave, sleep, eat or be comforted in the same way your second child will.  Part of being a good parent is recognizing that and observing what does work for each child.

3) Cherish the time that your baby is an infant.  It's hard at times (like when you're up in the middle of the night for a third feeding), but before long your "baby" will be two and you'll long for the days where all she wanted was for you to hold her. 

4) Take pictures at every opportunity.  You'll be amazed at how quickly they change and how quickly you forget what they were like before they changed. 

5) When all else fails and you're at wit's end, put the baby in the crib or in a safe place and go to another room.  Take deep breaths, take a shower, read the Bible, pray.  Do whatever you need to do to calm yourself down and refocus on your purpose.  It may seem cruel to leave baby to cry, but he'll be better off if you go away and return as a happier, calmer Mommy. 

6) When you have an infant, your house will probably be a mess, the laundry will probably be piled up and you may not have showered in a day or two.  This is part of being a good mom.  The laundry and the cleaning can wait.  Spending time with your baby and taking care of her needs are what is most important.  He won't be so needy forever and the time you spend with him helps teach him that he is loved and that you can be trusted.

7) Spend time praying for your child(ren) and for your ability to be a good mom.  It's amazing how prayer can help keep your head together and keep you focused on the good things.  Being a mom isn't as easy as some people make it look!

8) Spend time talking to other moms and reading blogs written by moms who will be real about being a mommy.  It will help you remember that you're not the only one!

9) Once baby is old enough that you can get away for an hour or two, do it! Having some time away will make you love your baby even more when you return, will help keep you from being depressed from being stuck in the house all the time and will help you find an identity for yourself other than "Mommy."

10) Remember that you aren't perfect.  You're not supposed to be.  Even when you're a "seasoned" mom, you will still make mistakes.  We're human.  The redeeming factor, however, is that God is full of grace and mercy. He's constantly making us into the person/mommy we're supposed to be. Don't give up on yourself; God hasn't!

22 Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
-Lamentations 3:22-23

1 comment:

  1. Amen! Loved this post...and since becoming a mommy, that passage of Scripture has meant a LOT to me!