Melissa21's picture
Melissa21

Mom to be

I would like to know what is expected for a new mom?



Melissa21's picture
Melissa21
is there anyone who can help me? i am 20 years old and going to college. any advice? plzzz
mayamay's picture
mayamay
Expectations change depending on the age of the baby. The first thing is, a new mom is expected to put her baby's needs first, her own needs second, and the rest of the world has to take care of itself. The mom has more than enough to do taking care of herself and her baby. Carrying and delivering a baby are like the physical equivalent of having a chronic illness and being in a car wreck. As the mom recovers from this trauma, she has the additional responsibility of developing a relationship with someone who is completely helpless, self-centered, and not much fun.
mayamay's picture
mayamay
Since this is true, a mom should be expected to need help from other people. People often say to new moms, "Let me know if I can help." Moms need to do that, but it can be hard, because moms expect themselves to be able to handle everything. They may remember their own mothers as being very competent. The thing is, nobody remembers how their mom behaved when they were brand-new babies, and their moms probably didn't talk about how discouraging and difficult it was, because good moms want their kids to know that they are loved.
mayamay's picture
mayamay
Putting baby's needs 1st and mom's needs 2nd means mom should be asking for help, even though it makes her feel dumb. People will want to help 'with the baby,' but what you will need is help with keeping up the house: to tidy and clean and do the laundry and cooking, and to TEACH you how to feed, bathe, protect, and care for the baby. If either of the baby's grandmothers would be a resource, it would be wonderful if she could stay with you (or you could stay with her) for 2 weeks. She would need to be with you 24/7, except for quick grocery shopping trips. Or a Doula would provide a similar service, though it will cost you. The dad is another resource, though he likely has as little experience with a newborn as you do, but he could certainly take on the household chores and learn some baby-care skills. After the first 2 weeks, you will still need help with the household stuff, and don't Don't DON'T go back to school or work even part time until the baby is >= 6 weeks old.
mayamay's picture
mayamay
That's because of the car-wreck part of delivering a baby. A body needs time to repair itself, and you just can't heal any quicker than that. I tried part-time at 4 weeks, and I took about a year longer to recover than I did with the previous 2 babies. Also, stay in the hospital until after you have a bowel movement. Insist! There was a time about 25 years ago when hospitals were discharging new moms within 24 hours of delivery. I don't think they are doing that anywhere anymore, but don't let them. It isn't that there's anything particular to worry about with the bowel movement, but it's a handy way to know that you've had the hospital support for long enough.
Melissa21's picture
Melissa21
thank you :). I was thinking of going to work part time after but i didnt know you had to wait 6 weeks to recover. But yeah i will have alot of help from my grandmother. And i dont start school till feburary, so thats good. But financially i dont think im stable enough. i mean how much do diapers cost? or how many does a baby need a day? i know i have to focus on the baby 24/7. but i am nervous on delivering the baby.
mayamay's picture
mayamay
newborns need about 10 diapers a day for the first couple of weeks, then about 8 a day after that. It isn't that you need to focus on the baby, you need to focus on the pair of you. You need to rest and heal and relax while you can, and then you also need to cuddle and change and feed and enjoy your baby.
mayamay's picture
mayamay
I'm just planting the seed of an idea with you. It may be good to change your plans for school. If you are due Jan. 10, you may not deliver until the 17th (which is terribly discouraging, but true). If that is what happens, then 6 weeks takes you to Feb. 28. Can I say again that it is not that it is nice to have six weeks to recover, it is IMPORTANT for your physical recovery that you take the full 6 weeks with the flexibility to take some exercise when you notice your body is feeling up to it, and to get off your feet when you notice that your body is getting tense. If you could take your courses on-line until the 1st of March, that would be OK. That 3rd pregnancy, I was just working 8 hours a week, 4 hrs each on Saturday and Sunday. After about 6 months I added another 4 hours on Wednesday evenings. SERIOUSLY! I wonder, if I had just waited another 2 weeks to start, would I have been able to take on more during that year.
mayamay's picture
mayamay
This is from a mommy blog, I don't know the woman. "The 6 or 8 weeks are the official dates no matter how beat up you feel after giving birth. At 6 weeks I felt sufficiently recovered to slowly walk around the park, but I definitely would not have been able to work full time with the hectic nursing and sleep deprived schedule. Most of my friends were barely able to start cleaning their home 8 weeks after a C- section. I think the 6 or 8 weeks defined by the medical community only meant you are on the road to recovery, not full recovery."
mayamay's picture
mayamay
If you aren't already working with a social worker to get you some financial support, it would be a good idea to seek that out. There is NO better investment of taxpayer funds than to support a family in this foundational time. I think you will be MORE LIKELY to be able to provide for yourself and your baby for the REST of your life if you get completely recovered before you risk returning to school.