This week on Meet the Parents we hear from Jenni who blogs at Chilling with Lucas.
Tell me a bit about you, your blog and your family.
We live in Lancashire, D and I have been together 6 years. Lucas is 18 months old. D is a business development manager within the health and safety training industry and I manage the social media and marketing for a keepsake company that specialises in personalised and hand print jewellery.
What one essential item would you insist on putting in your hospital bag (for you)?
My favourite comfy t shirt.
Was there anything unexpected that happened during labour, that you think first-time mums should be prepared for?
Not during labour but after labour I had pins and needles in my head and my face felt numb. I was like that for the full night after giving birth, the nurses had no idea why. Also, in the middle of the night Lucas vomited what looked like blood, I hadn’t been warned this could happen and was obvious extremely worried. The nursing assistants hadn’t seen it before but one of the midwives said it was normal after a water birth.
What would be your one essential product for a newborn that no new parent should live without?
I would say for us it was the Fisher Price newborn to toddler rocker, other than in our arms, it was the only place Lucas would sleep.
What’s the best piece of advice you were given before your first child was born?
Don’t listen to what anyone says, go with my instinct
What’s the worst piece of advice you were given?
My midwife telling me not to worry about breastfeeding and get some formula in, I wanted support not to be told to give up in the first couple of days. If you do want support, contact your local breastfeeding support network, they are volunteers and genuinely want to help you. I don’t think I would have continued if I hadn’t contacted them.
In retrospect I wish now that I had sought more support but at the time I felt like I had too many different midwives in my house trying to tell me what to do; the last thing I wanted was yet another person telling me I should be breastfeeding in a way that felt wrong.
What would be your top tip for a first time parent-to-be?
Don’t be swayed by what other people are telling you, stick to what you want to do. With the exception of parents and grandparents, we didn’t have any visitors for the first week as I wanted proper time for us 3 to settle in together without people coming in and out of the house.
We didn’t even let our parents in for the first week (they did get to meet Little M when we were in hospital though)!
What’s the hardest thing about being a new parent?
The exhaustion, feeling like I was constantly awake settling, feeding or changing. I fed on demand and Lucas was pretty much attached to me for the first few months.
What’s the best thing about being a new parent?
Seeing the amazing creation that you and your partner have made. Watching him grow, discover and develop his personality.