Se7en Things You Forget About Newborns and Newborn Mums…

There are so many things to remember about labor and birth and pregnancy that I always quite forget that there are a whole lot of surprises waiting for me with a new baby!!! The first time round the whole focus is on the birth and getting the birth you are after… that I never really thought too much about living with a newborn. Now for the eighth time I should be an old hand at living with a newborn. But, and here’s the thing, for mothers who are doing this for the eighth time there were a whole lot of surprises too…

When it comes to teeny tiny newborns:

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  1. I always forget: How quickly “newborn passes” and how all that scrunchedness passes. Not to mention how totally and madly you love them.
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  3. I always forget: That there are no tears yet for their misery…and how geared we are to resolving it as fast as possible regardless of everything else in the world. Just don’t come between a mom and her crying newborn – Don’t!!!
  4. I always forget: How a newborn nurser requires both hands and intense concentration to get fed – no matter how skilled you are at nursing they need to master the skill too.
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  6. I always forget: Those little paper thin nails need to be snipped almost immediately because otherwise your newborn will look like it has been in a cat fight. Not to mention that all those little fingers grabbing you to nurse may well lessen the joyful experience as you feel you are being pierced by a million needles: baby-led acupuncture may well not be the key to new born parenting.
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  8. I always forget: That first baby poo, until I see it… It is black like tar and copious. The only way to move it on, so to speak, is to nurse away!!! That first “milk” gets their little tummies into gear and after a couple of days their poo looks like this – the copiousness doesn’t change, just the color and consistency changes!
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  10. I always forget: I have never had a newborn that loves a bath, they hate being naked and really a two second woosh through the water is enough. The reason for making the great effort of the bath is that it tends to be very soporific!!!

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  11. I always forget: How opinionated these little creatures are. And why shouldn’t they be!!! All of them have entirely their own combination of likes and dislikes. And this is what works for Hood #8:

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    1. He just can’t tolerate a hat.
    2. He hates his feet uncovered even in the two seconds that it takes to change his diaper.
    3. He loves listening to his brother’s trumpeting (it was just the other side of my skin before why wouldn’t he!).
    4. He loves a breeze through his hair, but hates the wind.
    5. He needs his hands tucked out of the way to nurse but likes them free to sleep.
    6. He doesn’t like being passed around with strangers, but then what baby does!
    7. Most of mine have shown no interest in toys but he already knows his owl is well worth peering at!

And then there are at least Se7en things I forget about myself:

  1. Did I mention: How madly in love with this “little newborness” I always am, which means that for the first couple of days I barley sleep a wink because I have to just peer at them and absorb them.
  2. Did I mention: That the first two or three days after the birth my body feels like it has been hit by a train, I always forget this!!! My body after a marathon feels nothing like as fatigued and tired!!! Sitting in one spot just makes you stiffer, it helps to move around – slightly!
  3. Did I mention: “Afterpains” I always forget about these until it is way too late!!! These “contractions” are easily as bad as labor and if you have a caregiver that has never had children they cannot possibly understand that!!! As your body springs back to “normal” in a couple of days after spending nine months growing to this size, it hurts!!! Especially when you are nursing your newborn… and this is the hardest part of visitors when you have a newborn… grimacing your way through a visit is not what the world is expecting from a new mother.
  4. Did I mention: That all that fluid that collects in your body for nine months has to go somewhere and you will spend the first couple of days dashing to the loo. This is a good thing, think of it as a quick weight loss plan. Not to mention you will be able to see your ankles really soon!!!
  5. Did I mention: That absolutely no clothes in your closet will fit… not a single thing. Maternity clothes fall off and pre-pregnancy clothes don’t cover all the gaps yet!!! At the moment I am roaming around in the father person’s shorts – they fit and nothing else does!!!
  6. Did I mention: How many hours in every day are spent caring for a newborn… not as many as you might think, they nurse and you change them but that doesn’t take all day. It is the holding them takes all day and frankly you have to – they like it and need to be held, you like it and need to hold them. The only way to survive and to get the rest you need is to hold your baby because when they sleep you will most likely have a nap with them – trust me this works!!!
  7. Did I mention: How amazed I am – every time – that this baby actually fitted within me – even all wrapped up I just can’t figure it out!!! And even though you are no longer pregnant you still have a billowing belly, all squishy and well not very appealing! But wait you will be rewarded because you should be able to see your feet soonish… and better than that you should be able to tie you laces a lot more comfortably within the week!!!

That’s it a bit of post pregnancy fun!!!

This Post is part of The Thirty Minute Mom’s Challenge at Steady Mom.

I popped this post onto the Works For Me Wednesday Site – go and have a look there for all sorts of tips on absolutely anything.

48 Replies to “Se7en Things You Forget About Newborns and Newborn Mums…”

  1. I so identify with every one of those points! Esp the love love love factor! That overwhelming, giddy-in-love feeling is awesome! And the afterpains – oh, the afterpains. I can only begin to imagine how bad they are by Hood #8. Mine got worse and worse with each kid, so by #4 they were excruciating. Definitely nearly as bad as labour. And you had DOUBLE that! Ouch! Hope they are all gone now.

    Love T

  2. Newborn bathing tip from our midwives, that worked well for us (but it takes two grownups to do this): One of you draws a hot (not lukewarm) bath and gets in/ The other one takes off the baby’s clothes/diaper and swaddles the wee one in a flannel diaper or a receiving blanket and hands the baby to the grownup in the tub. Grownup in the bath takes the swaddled baby into his/her arms and s-l-o-w-l-y lowers babe into the water. The baby gets used to the warm wet feeling while still feeling securely held. Then you can unwrap the tyke and proceed with bathing. Our little one (born June 09) loved this!

  3. Hi! I have been reading you for a bit now – found you when I was searching homeschooling in SA. I am about to embark on that terrifying journey come Jan 2010!
    But I am also pregnant with #4 and really just wanted to say how I appreciated this particular post! It is amazing what you remember, but perhaps just as amazing what you forget!! Thanks for the reminders! I somehow find it comforting that no matter how many of these little people we have, we never stop learning and growing along with them.
    All the best!
    Mliss

  4. Hi C, You are right – they are all so different and so amazing!!! Notice the poo pictures were specially published smaller for more sensitive viewers!!! Have a great week you all!!!

  5. Cute post! I’m visiting from the Steadymom challenge. I had twins 6 years ago and I have forgotten about some of the after having the baby fun things too. My sister is due with her first in December I’m going to send her this post, but it is also helpful for me because I will be staying with her and it’s a great reminder as to what she will be feeling after having the baby.

    Your new babe is beautiful!

  6. Hi her.other… this is how I take our first post birth bath together and it does help… but after a couple of days there is very little tricking these guys – clothes off means life is intolerable!!! Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  7. Hi M, All the best with your homeschool journey!!! And little #4… You are so right kids redefine life long learning!!! It seems every stage has a whole lot of twists and turns waiting for us!!! You have a great week – put your feet up already!!!

  8. Hi R, Isn’t that a great challenge from Steady Mom… Oh all the best with your sister’s babe. You survived twins I am sure you will be a great support!!! Have a fabulous week!!!

  9. With my second son, I swore I’d never forget how little he was. When we brought him home from the hospital, I took a picture of him next to my husband’s size 13 shoe. He liked to keep his legs crossed and close as a newborn, and would you believe it? The shoe and the boy were the same size!

  10. Congratulations on your newest Little! I always, always forget about the afterpains. With my 7th child I thought the afterpains were worse than the labor pains.

  11. Oh no you di’int post those diaper pics…YIKES. You know one of the 8 is going to find those, 10 years down the road…

    Great things to remember- I especially had problems remembering the nails! And two weeks in, my mother had to remind me to “bathe your offspring” since I had become, well, lax in the newborn hygiene area….

    Congrats again!

  12. Hi M again!!! No se7en is quite enough voice from me. Every now and then I may take some poetic license and say: se7en + 1!!! Hope you have a great week!!!

  13. Hi S… Yup I must say after breezing through labor and all its trials, I have a vague and hideous memory of myself crawling around the house in the early hours of the following morning begging for pain relief – any relief… and no a hot water bottle would not do the trick!!! Thanks for stopping by, and have a great week!!!

  14. Hi E, Good to have you back!!! Yup there was one of mine that I neglected to bath for a couple of days… but they seem to survive regardless of all my faults!!! And hopefully in ten years time there will be no memory of the internet and we will all just wirelessly connect for a natter each day!!! Have a good day!

  15. Hi there – I can’t believe you really pulled this post off in 30 minutes – you are impressive! Not to mention amazing for Sonlighting an awesome set of eight little people!

    Thanks for joining in today,

    Jamie

  16. Oh, I forget SO much with each one. I even asked a friend so many questions (she had 2 kids) and she laughed and asked why I was asking HER for advice when I had more kids than her. But you forget so many things!

    Steph

  17. Hi there
    There is so much you forget about those precious short newborn days. Almost made me broody again until I saw the NAPPY PICS!! Don’t mind forgetting that.
    love Kate

  18. OH YES. It’s been a little while since I had a newborn (my youngest is newly two) and you are SO RIGHT. I forgot all of those things EXCEPT the part about needing to peek in on and stare at the wee ones quite a bit. I don’t think I took my eyes off of my oldest when she was brand new for about two solid weeks (maybe longer).

    Thanks for taking a minute (or thirty) to remind me of all that newborn sweetness.

  19. Hay Steady Mom- Great Carnival!!! I so enjoyed it – don’t be too impressed: there are a lot of pictures rather than words!!! I have seriously watched the time I take to actually write a blog vs time in front of the lap top this week!!! Hmmmm I do actually have other things to do!!! Thanks again!

  20. Hi Steph, How good to hear from you!!! Isn’t it shocking how we delete so many things from our minds – SO QUICKLY!!! Hood #8 is three weeks today and already things aren’t quite as crisp as they were!!! I think some of us might forget more than others, which is why we keep going back for more!!! You have a fabulous week!!! Oh and I liked your review on “Where the Wild Things Are”… the movie isn’t out here yet, but I think we will keep them safely and happily in the book for a while to come, even though I would love to see it!!!

  21. Hi M. loved your 911 post!!! So glad you liked the newborn reminders!!! Aren’t us moms mad – just when we have a sleepy head newborn we sit up round the clock, just to watch the rise and fall of their little cheeks… but these are precious moments there would be no excuse for missing them!!! You have a good week!

  22. Just when I was forgetting! Archie’s been out for 9 months, so he’s exceeding the time he was cooking in utero (born at 36 weeks). I love these photos of your sweet little guy. His cheeks! Sigh.

    I have to say I was surprised to see the baby poo, but not. I think they could be educational for first-time parents. I remember the first time my oldest poo’d. I was alarmed. She had the orange pee crystals, too.

  23. Hi G, I hope you guys are all on the mend!!! Oh cheeks!!! Actually my little chef had the most amazing cheeks of all time, he is only just growing into them!!! I think the first time I saw newborn baby poo I could just not believe what I was seeing!!! Anyway the things us moms talk about – no shame I tell you!!! You have a good day!

  24. i just had #4 and everything in your post is sooo true!!
    i’m going to print it out and put it in the baby memory book so hopefully i will not forget this time!

  25. My last three babies were 15 months or less apart – and I still forget most of these! Especially the afterpains. Apparently drinking pineapple juice can help, something about the enzymes, so I will stock up next time.

    My youngest’s nappies were of great educational benefit for my budding medical professional. She watched very carefully to see the colour change and checked for fat globules to check that bub was getting all the yummy hind-milk LOL

    All mine have loved the bath though, the getting in and out not so much but the bath itself they love.

  26. Thanks for sharing all this newborn wonder with us – I have really enjoyed it. No 4 due in 3 months is supposed to be the last one for us, but I wonder how I am going to live without that newborn -love- high fix every couple of years. Should maybe consider midwifery or something to facilitate access to newborns!!

  27. HI L, I am yet again astonished at how quickly everything flies past, not to mention how selective our memories are!!! And even how quickly we forget their desperate little quirks!!! You have a good week!

  28. Hi J, love the nappy science!!! I am going to post a signboard up saying try pineapple juice next time… interestingly enough I always crave pineapple juice, but didn’t this time – hmmm lesson learnt I can tell you!!! Hope you have a great day with your little ones today!!!

  29. Hi J, I know what you mean – I am really wondering how I will cope without totally decluttering my house from top to bottom, all in the name of nesting, every 18 months… the thought of the general entropy is pretty terrifying. As for newborn wonder how in the world do you capture that!!! I think the wonder might only work for our newborns so midwifery probably isn’t the best career choice!!! I hope you guys have a great blustery day!!!

  30. Oh, they are great reminders!!! I am expecting #7 but my current youngest is 5 which is a big age gap for me. It will be different going back to all those baby ‘specials’ again, but soooo lovely. Thanks for the reminders 🙂

  31. These are great reminders. I am forwarding to a friend who is expecting her first. There are some things is it best to be prepared for 🙂

    Once a friend said to me, “They are babies for SUCH a short time! They are little kids FOREVER but they are babies for such a short time!” Now that we are in the third year of fire fighter/truck obsession, I know what she means. I feel like he has been a little kid forever but I miss those baby moments.

  32. Hi L… All the best with #7… I am glad you liked the reminders!!! I aways wanted to have my kids close together because I am so terrified of getting out the nappy run and sleepless nights!!! I don’t think I can take the pace!!! Luckily we love them so much that we can rise to the occasion!!! Have a good week and put your feet up!!!

  33. Hi E. with my first just turned twelve I can tell you the terrible truth that boyhood passes so quickly too and before you know it the trucks and firetrucks will be over and they will be reading strange scifi books and staying up half the night listening intently to podcasts!!! Twelve years from now he could be married with kids and I feel like just yesterday he arrived – too weird how the old mind warps!!! Hope you have a great trucking week!!!

  34. Hi E, congrats on your newborn… we just hit three weeks and I can’t believe how his face changes every single day… Truly they are a work of art!!! Enjoy the moment!!!

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