My son will be two in just a few months. While that reality is starting to sink in, I started thinking about all the questions I had when I became a new mom. The questions that were deep down in my heart, but I didn’t dare ask out loud.
- Am I a good mom?
- Will I ever fit into my clothes again?
- Does everyone else know more than me?
- What if my son never gives up the pacifier, doesn’t learn to roll on his belly, has terrible reactions to his vaccines, ect. … ( I could keep going and going!)
- Will I ever be able to sleep again?
If I could go back in time, I would tell myself these five things that I needed to hear during those first few weeks.
1.You’re a good mom.
Every time a family member, friend, or even complete stranger gave me advice or a suggestion, I interpreted it as, “You’re not doing it right. You’re a bad mother!” Now, I blame it on the hormones because looking back I realize that was not their intentions at all!
But I felt like I was being criticized for the job that I was doing. It wasn’t until my son’s two month appointment when the doctor told me, “You’re doing a good job, Mom,” that I realized I was doing okay. The doctor probably tells all the new moms that they are doing a good job, but I so desperately needed to hear his words of encouragement. My heart felt lighter, and I walked out of the doctor’s office with a bounce to my step that day. I just needed the confirmation that I was doing a good job.
If your child is fed, clothed, and loved, you’re doing a great job, Mom!
2. Don’t try on your per-pregancy clothes for a very long time.
No one told me that I was still going to look 6 months pregnant after giving birth! I barely squeezed into the elastic waist pants and t-shirt that I wore home from the hospital! But for some reason I thought it would be a good idea to try on a pair of my non-maternity jeans a few days after returning home from the hospital. This was the worst decision ever! I was only left discouraged. It took me six months to lose all of my pregnancy weight and a year to finally fit back into my clothes. If I ever have a child again, I will make sure to stay clear of my closet for several months!
3. You’re the mom You make the decisions.
When you have a baby, everyone who has ever been a parent, thinks that they know what you need to do. And I mean everyone, even complete strangers! One evening we were out to eat and a lady at the booth behind us told me that I needed to put a hat on my son. She told me this twice before finally leaving. My son’s hat was in the car, so I told my husband that I was going to go get the hat. My husband simply said, “You’re the mom. Ignore that lady. He doesn’t need his hat.”
My husband was right! I’ve had to learn to trust my mom instincts. God created me with exactly what I need to be a mom, and I ask Him daily to help me know what to do when it comes to mothering. Even if the choices I make for my son are different from other moms, they are the right choices, because I’m the mom.
I have friends who I respect greatly, but we have chosen different things for our kids because that is what we believe to be best for our families. I don’t talk about these issues regularly on this blog or even on my personal social media because I believe that we all answer to God for the choices that we make, not each other (or the lady in the booth behind us).
4. Stop Worrying.
When I became a mom, I realized there was so much to worry about because I wasn’t only responsible for myself but now I was responsible for a tiny human being as well. My son was born with a clogged tear duct which meant that on one of his eyes the tears would build up and I often had to wipe his eye clean. The doctor told me that usually the duct opens on its own between 9-12 months. If it didn’t open on its own, he would need to have surgery. I didn’t worry about this until my son turned 9 months and his eye duct still didn’t clear up. Then at 10, 11, and 12 months it still wasn’t clear! I made an appointment for my son to see an eye specialist. Guess what? The duct opened the next week and I canceled the appointment!
There have been other things that I have worried about along the way, but everything has taken care of itself. I started claiming Matthew 6:34 “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
It is so easy to worry as a mom, but the worrying does absolutely no good.
5. You will sleep again!
I had no idea how little sleep I could survive on until I became a mom. I think the only thing that kept me going some days was coffee! There were days when I was so discouraged and exhausted, all I wanted to do was get a good’s night sleep but of course I couldn’t. I had to remember that this was only for a season. If I could go back in time, I would tell myself to rest more. I’ve never been good at taking naps, but I really should have just put my feet up more instead of trying to squeeze in all the things that needed done.
Tell me: If you are a mom, can you relate? What else do you think new moms need to hear?
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