All posts filed under: 4th Trimester Essentials

toddler and a baby

And baby makes two: tips from parents

Having a new baby brings all sorts of change, even when it’s not your first baby. I asked some parents to share their experiences and tips for managing the early weeks and months with their baby and toddler Working with parents since 2002 Janine Smith Practice where you can read and talk about pregnancy, birth and early parenting Say hello…Instagram | Linkedin Copyright: Janine Smith 2020

Preparing your home for your new baby

It can be useful to think about what you need to have at home for your baby and to help you as you recover. The essentials You don’t need to buy a lot for your baby but some items can be needed and can make a difference to you. clothes – a few sleep-suits, body suits and socks nappies, cotton wool, cleaning cloths, wipes (depending on how you are planning to do it) changing mat changing bag cellular blankets and sheets somewhere safe to sleep – Moses basket, cot, your bed, if it has been adapted to be safe sling car seat/pram system large and small muslin squares bottles, formula, breast-pump, silicon breast-pump sterilizing equipment – depending on how you are going to feed your baby v-pillow for feeding towels, baby sponge/cloth baby bath or a bath support (or you can use the sink or pop baby in the bath with you) You will add to this as you need it and as your baby grows and changes and you can see what they need. …

make a rod for your own back

You’ll make a rod for your own back

To ‘make a rod for your own back’ is to do something that inadvertently creates troubles or misfortune in the future. The expression is usually used when someone has done something which seemed like a good idea at the time but comes back to bite them in some unexpected way. I now have children at college and in university and I have been reflecting on life as a mother and on those early days, weeks and months with my babies when I felt a bit lost, like I was doing it wrong and being told I was making a rod for my back. Becoming a mother was a huge transition – as it is for most of us. I became more selfless and I learnt to trust my instincts. Before I became a mum I was never interested in breastfeeding or co-sleeping – in fact I mocked it when I went to antenatal classes..  When I was pregnant, I started reading and talking to friends who were mothers and they spoke positively – although fairly realistically …

loneliness of motherhood

Loneliness of Motherhood

There is a loneliness of motherhood because having young children is not all about coffee shops and idle chatter. It is not a holiday. It can be one of the toughest times in a woman’s life. The loneliness of motherhood can be torture. With your first child, the learning curve is steep – learning to keep a baby settled, soothed and alive while recovering from pregnancy, birth and unrealistic expectations of how motherhood should be. You might be sleep deprived, in need of supportive mum friends and it could feel like you are on our own with the day-to-day responsibilities of looking after your baby. As a mother, you might feel judged, with unreal expectations stacked against you and your baby. It can be a hard slog. When you become a mother it doesn’t matter what job you do, how old you are or how much you spent preparing for your baby’s arrival. You have a baby to look after and it can knock your confidence when they cry, struggle to poo, won’t sleep or …

enjoy every second

enjoy every second

I will never forget the first time I heard someone say “enjoy every second with her” about my time with my daughter, who was a few weeks old. My first thought was ‘you’ve got to be kidding me, I’m too knackered to enjoy her’ and then I felt this huge wave if guilt because I wasn’t enjoying my gorgeous, healthy, tiny, precious baby. I loved her, I felt incredibly protective of her and I did everything within my power to keep her healthy, safe, alive – I kept breastfeeding when I didn’t have a clue and when I cried with every latch (thankfully the bad latch was sorted and feeding was a dream after that); I got up every hour in the night; I tried to listen to my instincts and I cuddled her and I gazed at her when she slept, although that was more relief that she wasn’t crying than of enjoyment. My first baby – who didn’t do sleep – nearly broke me. And of course I did enjoy time with her …