Welcome back to my guest blogger series, Meet the Parents. This week, Caroline from Mrs Magovern is sharing her advice for new mummies and daddies.
Tell me a bit about you, your blog and your family.
Hi, my name’s Caroline and I’m a 32 year old mum of three. I started my blog, ‘Mrs Magovern’ to document my fertility problems whilst trying to conceive my third child. I found blogging therapeutic as I was able to empty my mind when I didn’t always feel comfortable talking to others.
What one essential item would you insist on putting in your hospital bag (for you)?
A wash bag full of lots of things to make you feel human again; shower gel, toothpaste and deodorant. The first shower after giving birth, albeit a little sore, is lovely as you do feel pretty dirty after labour! You’re then ready to settle down for hours of snuggles!
Was there anything unexpected that happened during labour, that you think first-time mums should be prepared for?
I think giving birth to my placenta was a little bit of a shock. You feel the ‘job’s done’ when the baby’s out but no-one really tells you that the contractions continue, albeit less strong, in order to push the placenta out. It doesn’t hurt as it’s pretty soft but it was still a shock – especially the size of it! I’d advise all new mums to have a quick peek at their placenta – it’s amazing and has kept your baby alive for nine months.
Having had a c-section, this is still a mystery to me!
What would be your one essential product for a newborn that no new parent should live without?
Besides the obvious things like nappies I would suggest every single parent carry a muslin with them wherever they go. They have so many uses; sun shade, burp cloth and blanket to name but a few.
What’s the best piece of advice you were given before your first child was born?
“Sleep when the baby sleeps”, although I didn’t listen to it which is how I found out what a good piece of advice it is!
What’s the worst piece of advice you were given?
Don’t give a baby water. If it’s hot, in my opinion, a baby needs small amounts of cool, boiled water. Our second child ended up in hospital through dehydration as we were advised formula would be fine in the summer months. Clearly it wasn’t.
I found the hot weather when Little M was small so stressful. She was breastfed so we didn’t need to give water but I’ve read that formula babies do need it when the weather is hot.
What would be your top tip for a first time parent-to-be?
The days are long but the years are short. Appreciate the early days, however tired you are.
What’s the hardest thing about being a new parent?
The tiredness. It will make you snappy and emotional.
Considering this is such a big part of having a newborn, you’d think our bodies would have evolved to help us to deal with this better!
What’s the best thing about being a new parent?
Being a new parent, of course! Those early hazy, days are like nothing else. They don’t last long so cherish them!