As my little bear reached the one year mark and we prepared for his birthday, I can’t help reflecting on everything I have learned as a first time mom. The 13 lessons learned in my first year of motherhood, from little things that make a big difference (like using the bathroom before grabbing the baby) to the big lessons (like don’t let your crawling and climbing seven month old alone for more than one second). The past year has had hilarious, neurotic and tear worthy moments.
Here are 13 lessons I learned from those moments:
- Always pee before you grab the baby in the morning or at night. Failure to do so results in you near tears trying not to pee yourself while your “precious angel” finishes his bottle or is comfortably falling asleep in your arms.
- Never put breast milk bottles on the counter without a lid. Even for a moment. If it spills you will cry and sob something incoherent about “liquid gold” (if you’re not already crying over sore nipples).
- If you don’t want people constantly passing around your newborn have one major freak-out that sounds something like “he’s not a freaking hot potato” in a very shrill voice. After that, everyone leaves your baby alone or asks first.
- Buy a bigger coffee mug. Seriously. Regular coffee mugs are irrelevant.
- Everything is worse at three am. Wait til morning before analyzing the situation and responding with a meltdown. Trust me..
- Always remove the beast pump slowly… there is backsplash.
- For the first six months, learn to eat your meals in under four minutes. That’s all you’ll have between screams, chores around the house, and/or personal time.
- Invest in a straw so you are not attempting to drink anything anywhere within reach of the twitchy three month old sleeping on your chest.
- Before you lie down on the couch with your baby for snuggles, make sure you have all the remotes. Teaching yourself to us your toes to pull the remote closer is not a marketable skill to have.
- Having a routine can be good but babies don’t care. Learn to go with the flow or you’ll be a basket case. The laundry does not need to be done at eight am on Saturdays.
- Don’t spend too much money on fancy chew beads. Your baby will just gnaw on everything you don’t want her to anyways.
- Once you start solids, assume that you can never eat in front of your babe again unless they are eating also. The meltdown that will ensue is not worth the four almonds you just shoved in your mouth.
- Always bring “back up” clothes. And then another back up. Because when you try to change a poop explosion on the front seat of the car you will inevitably get poop on the back up clothes and require one more set.
I’m sure in the coming years much, much more will be added to this list. After all, we have just entered the walking stage! But until then, I will continue to remember, each and every day, the three cardinal rules of parenting: coffee is the essence of life, when in doubt laugh maniacally & last but not least always remember that children are a part of you… you created this monster!