Motherhood

7 Things I Learned In My First Year As A Mom

It’s cliche to talk about it, I know, but I’ll say it again, being a parent can really change you in many ways. We all know and our moms have been saying this all our lives that it’s never easy to be a mom, that it takes a lot of courage to raise a child and it takes your whole life as a female individual to stand right beside your son or daughter from the day he or she was born until he or she is ready to take the world’s challenges alone. But you know, being a parent is never-ending so you really need to think, not just twice, triple the ‘twice’ or just don’t do it if you’re not yet ready because you are going to leave everything (and everyone) behind to be one.

Since I became a mom, it’s been a joyride.

Like every mom out there, it’s always difficult to handle the first born. Because everything is your first, you just simply don’t know what to do so I listed some of the things I have encountered that may, hopefully, help other new moms out there. Remember that this is all based from my experience and doesn’t mean that everything I did during these times were the right things to do. You also need to ask help from your OB and your moms, of course. 

Fever is normal

Just like what the doctors keep saying, fever is our body’s way of saying that it is fighting off an illness caused by virus, infection, etc. I also panicked a lot when my boy had a fever. There was a time that it lasted for 5 days and it was the time when dengue, japanese encephalitis, etc were the talk of the town. To help you calm down during these times, I listed below some of the most common causes of fever in babies.

  1. Viral Infection

Most fevers in babies nowadays are caused by viral infection which your baby can get from other people who also had the same symptoms before. From my baby’s experience, this usually lasts for 3-5 days. Some paracetamol can make your baby feel well and ease some of the symptoms but you need to consult his pedia first.

2. UTI

UTI can also cause fever to babies which according to my baby’s pedia is normal but is something that should not be ignored because as parents, you can do something so your baby would be safe from this. Some of the causes are the diaper you’re using, not enough water intake and untidy surrounding.

3. Teething

My son did not have fever when he was teething, though, but I also wanted to share what my baby’s pedia told us. If your baby was teething, he may feel hot because his body temperature usually goes up during this time but it should not last more than 2 days. Usually it goes away after 1-2days. 

Everybody loves babies and you should know it

So your baby is born. You are a mom now.  You are happy. Your family is happy. Your extended family is happy. Your family friends are happy. Your whole barangay is happy. Your old classmates, your colleagues, your mom’s amigas, the dogs in your neighbor, the nurses in the hospital, the woman at the grocery store, they are all happy and waiting to visit your baby. Expect that. Of course, you don’t want to take your baby away from them, take him to the mountains, and hide there forever. You just don’t do it. Be thankful that they’re happy for you and your baby. I know you may be worried that when they visit, they might carry some bad elements, virus, bacteria, infection, all the bad things on earth. It’s okay to feel that way because you’re a mom now. But you can always remind them in a nice way to clean themselves before visiting so you can make sure that everybody is healthy and happy. (Or simply ask your mom to remind the visitors. This is more effective because they fear the grandmoms. LOL)

Speech delay is not a worry sometimes

Don’t get me wrong. As a mom, you should know and feel when you need to worry regarding this. A lot of parents nowadays are expecting their babies to talk earlier than usual and it’s fine. Some babies are like these, some babies talk late but it’s something we don’t need to worry about. I know people who talked late when they were still babies but looking and talking so well now. Sometimes, it’s late because your baby is busy learning other skills that don’t involve talking. Just remember every baby is different. My son started uttering intentional sounds when he was 6mos old and started talking words when he was 9mos old. At 1, he could respond and react to what we were saying.

Some babies walk late

Since my baby talked earlier than usual, I think. I expected him to walk earlier, as well. But it didn’t happen. Most babies start to walk between 6-9 mos old but my baby started walking when he was 11mos old. I was a bit worried by then since I knew some babies with the same age as him who already started walking. I searched online and the pedia also told us that some perfectly normal babies may take longer to really start walking. So parents, don’t worry. Let them take their time. Let them be babies, while they still are. Help them practice. It would also help them (and you) walk and exercise their bones and muscles at the same time.

It’s okay to feed your baby what you eat

But given that what you eat is healthy food. Of course, you don’t want to feed your baby something that you know may badly affect his health. In the first 3mos, it’s important that they are breastfed exclusively. This will help them prepare their body and health while growing up. When your baby reaches 3mos old and above, you may start feeding them solid food but you need to ask your pedia first since this is the first time you will feed them. And finally when he/she reaches 6mos old you can already feed them what you eat. The healthy food that you eat. Feed them fruits and vegetables, meat and eggs, fish and soup. They will like it. Some babies don’t like to eat the same food every time of the day so you have to be creative on your food plan. Choosing the food for your baby can be really exciting, especially if could see that they liked it. You may also cook big servings and store it in a refrigerator. This is effective for working moms that don’t have enough time to prepare food in the morning. Put it in small, clean containers inside the freezer, this will be good for 3days.

It’s sad to be away from your baby but you can endure it

This is more applicable to working moms, I guess. You will be given 100 days at most, as your maternity leave. It’s only you and the baby for 100 days. At first it feels just okay. The attachment you created is not yet big but as time goes by, you will see yourself  loving this tiny human being without anything in return. You will take care of him more than you ever took care of someone else in your life before. You will give him everything even your last breath just to make sure they’re always okay and happy. And that’s fine. That’s your job. And even if you won’t get paid for this kind of job, you will still do this over and over again for a million times because that’s your baby, he came from you. And so you will create this kind of attachment with him and you won’t get out of it. Or you would, but you will die first. Just kidding! You will be sad, of course. You’ll always think of your baby when you’re away from him and your parents won’t allow you to even think of him because as an old belief, they say it would make the baby cry more. But whatever, you need to endure the sadness. You should work well for you and for your baby. And remember, even though you became a mom, you are still you. You are still a female individual that has a life on her own that does not depend on others to live. So don’t be sad, get your bag, go to work and break a leg. And you will soon go home to your baby and all your stress from work will go away completely.

Follow what your parents say

Sometimes you will be caught between your parents and the baby’s pedia. Yes, it happens. And because you are a millenial, you will choose to follow the book, what the doctors say and prescribe. But you know, our parents raised us and we are okay and healthy now so why not give them the chance to say what they gotta say and follow them for once. You will be shocked, sometimes it’s like magic! viola! Your baby is no longer sick! Sometimes, I think that moms have special powers because they can easily make us (and our babies) feel better after being sick. Doctors can also do this but if it is our parents, they always do it with pure love.

Your husband before your baby

Why am I saying this? Duh! Okay, remove this part. LOL! But seriously, your husband should always go first before your baby because it has to be the BOTH of you, as parents, for your child. You have to encourage each other to be good parents and this starts by being a good partner to one another. Your child needs the two of you and as a mother, you are  responsible in showing love and teaching love to your child so he grows up with a good heart. Now, if you’re a single mom, it should not affect the love you’re giving your child. He will be your partner in life so raise him with all the love he deserves and wait until he gives it back to you as soon as he understands everything. It will be all worth it, I swear.

Actually, I learned a lot of things. But these are my favorite. I know being a parent is a never-ending learning process and you’ll just get better and better from your own mistakes and the difficulties you encounter. But believe me, it’s happy and exciting. So thank you for all the moms, thank you for my mom for enduring the sadness and difficulties of life just to give us a good and happy life. 

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