Ten Things You Need to Know About Motherhood

As a new mom, I really wanted to know what I didn’t know: how to be successful. I wanted someone to clue me into the secret of being a great mom. Here’s the thing: there is no secret. Motherhood is not for the faint of heart—and even if someone tells you about it, you won’t comprehend it until you are in it for real.

That said, there are many things no one tells you about and here are ten things I wish I had known way earlier than I did!

  1. You start singing and changing the lyrics to fit your child. For instance, I sang You Are My Sunshine—never sang it before but there I was singing it to my kids
  2. You stand, but you’re moving constantly. You just stand there, swaying. And if you aren’t holding your baby, after a while you still catch yourself swaying!
  3. You need to schedule naps. My son never napped—unless he was in a car or sometimes a baby carriage. As a new mom, I didn’t know you’re supposed to put your kid on a schedule. So I learned and believe me when my second came along I put her down every day to nap. And she did. Trust me when I say a napping child is really important for all of you.
  4. You will hate the noisy, plastic toys. Your siblings will buy a million of them, just to see you cry.
  5. Your home will be scattered. There will be bright colored blankets and pacifiers in every corner. Leave the, there, you will need them.
  6. The swing, bouncy seat and exer-saucer will become your best friends. You won’t know what you ever did without them.
  7. Breastfeeding can be tough. It’s easy for some, hard for others. It takes patience, quiet and a few weeks to really get the hang of it. That said, if you are bleeding or getting infections or it’s just not working for you, that is OK. Your child will be fine with formula, truly. Let it go.
  8. Motherhood is an amazing bond. Even if you never spoke to strangers before, you will other moms. In the blink of an eye, you are understanding friends.
  9. You will love seeing your partner with your child. They will look sexy and adorable giving a bath; singing a lullaby; or reading to your little one. Still, you will not want sex.
  10. It can be isolating and exhausting. Join a playgroup, get a sitter, and go outside every day. The playgroup is a lifesaver and often those friendships last a lifetime. A sitter is also important once in a while—even just to go to the grocery store alone. Not joking on that; I was ecstatic to go to buy anything by myself. And if you can’t do either and you are home with your baby, go outside with him/her. Fresh air helps everything.

Here’s the most important nugget you need to know: Motherhood is more than worth every ounce of energy you give it. And you give a lot. Forever. And you’d never ever change it for the world.

Dana Baker

Dana Baker is a writer, a not-so-perfect mom of two and a Parent and Teen Coach. Founder of Parenting In Real Life, Dana knows first hand the challenges of raising a child with anxiety as well as ADHD and some depression. She understands the ups, the downs and the downright uglies and offers a reality check and a dose of good humor in her advice from the trenches. Dana has been featured in RealityMoms, Grown & Flown, Parent.com, Thrive Global, and ADDitude. You can find more about Dana on Parenting in Real Life.

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