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(Diary) 8 Mistakes I Made in 8-Weeks as a New Mom
I'm being honest here...
Welcome to my diary. These are entires I wrote during my own pregnancy. What you’re about to read is unfiltered, unedited, and perhaps a bit uncanny. But these are my raw feelings written in real-time. Everyone’s perspective and journey is different. This is mine.
Jen Glantz here.
I’ve been a mom for 2-months now.
People like to ask me:
Is it getting easier?
Are you getting the hang of this mom thing?
Are you not scared to be a mom anymore?
No. No. And No.
Every day with a newborn is different than the day before.
Just when you think you’ve found a magic trick to get your baby to snooze for a few hours straight, you quickly realize it might have been more good luck than a game plan to follow.
Just when I think I’ve figured out how to balance full-time work with being a full-time mom, I check my inbox to see endless unanswered emails about deadlines I missed or work opportunities I wish I could say yes to - but I can’t right now.
And just when I think I’m not as scared to be a mom anymore, the baby will cough or her eye will turn red and I’ll run to Google before running to the pediatrician’s office.
So I’m 2-months in and it’s all really scary and tough.
Every morning I wake up and wonder how I’m going to make it through the day.
And every night I go to bed impressed that I did.
This week: I’m scared but proud to be a mom.
Some quick things I loved this week:
❤️ Products that I fell in love with this week:
This really cool company sent me a cocktail making machine to test out and it was awesome! I’m not good at making my own cocktails and this machine was easy and fun to use. It’s a great anniversary gift or something sweet to give new parents. Check it out here.
Adam bought this bestselling item on Amazon and so far Gemma really loves it.
❤️ An article I wrote about eating placenta.
❤️I’ve been spending time spilling my thoughts on TikTok. Watch some of that fun stuff right here!
8 Mistakes I Made in 8-Weeks as a New Mom
To celebrate my two month anniversary of being a mom, I wanted to round-up some of the biggest mistakes I made. Looking back, these are the things I wish people told me to plan for after having a baby. So if you know anyone who is having a baby, share this with them. It might help or it might make them roll their eyes - because all this stuff is really hard to care about when you’re thinking about how labor and delivery is going to go.
Either way, here are my biggest 8 mistakes and how I wish I handled them differently.
Set Firm Boundaries
After the baby arrived, I was exhausted, busy, and completely overwhelmed. What made it worse was not having strict boundaries or pre-planned ways to respond to all the noise. I wish I had a script written out to share with people who called and texted - nonstop - about coming to see the baby. Even better, I wish Adam and I had set a boundary for how long we’d wait until we saw people (except family). I made the mistake of seeing some friends in the first 1-2 weeks and it was so exhausting and depleting. It was a huge mistake. I wish we said: no visitors or guests (aside from family) until week 8. Also, I wish Adam and I agreed on boundaries about using our phone around the baby - it can be easy to do this since pre-baby we were always on the phone.
Figured Out How to Take off Work
Neither of us had any time off of work. Hours after delivering the baby, we were both back on our phones and computers. A few days after we got home from the hospital, we both were attempting to work 9-5. What a disaster. I thought I could figure out how to make this work but I couldn’t. I was so tired and there was a baby who needed to be cared for and loved. We were both so distracted by our work to-do lists that meeting her basic needs became challenging. I didn’t want that to be the case so I did 15% of the work I usually do in a month. But I felt sad and resentful, stressed and angry that I could not be a full-time mom and a full-time worker. We’re still figuring this all out but I wish I would have pre-planned paid family leave before getting pregnant (either by getting a short-term disability plan or paid family leave through the state). Both of those options have to be done in advance of being pregnant so I missed out - but you should look into these options ASAP when family planning.
Set Aside a Clothing Budget
I didn’t realize how my body would be post-birth. I thought after a week or two I’d be back in my old leggings. But no no no. I didn’t even fit in my maternity leggings since my post-birth body was shaped so different. Rather than judge my body or critique it after such a wild experience of being pregnant and giving birth, I wish I had set aside $300 to buy new postpartum clothing. Nothing fit me so I wore baggy sweatpants for 3-4 weeks and now I’m wearing my maternity biker shorts until I find time to go shopping. Your post-birth body will be new to you and it deserves clothes that fit it right.
Had Plans for Baby Feeding
I always assumed I’d breastfeed the baby. I don’t know why I assumed that but I did. I took one short lactaction class while I was pregnant and didn’t learn anything. So when breastfeeding didn’t go as planned, I felt like a failure. I wasn’t even prepared with a backup plan. I had a breast pump in a box that I didn’t know how to use and a can of formula. I wish that I had spent more time understanding all the baby feeding options and had a plan and a backup plan ready to go. This was the most stressful thing about having a newborn weeks 1-3.
Connected With Mom Friends
Having a newborn is a lonely experience. Your friends and family don’t understand what you’re going through, even if they have had kids in the past. The exhaustion, the stress, the worry all fades eventually. But when you’re in the middle of it, wow. It’s rough. There are a lot of new mom groups in my neighborhood but I have been too tired to even attempt to go to a meetup. My brain is hardly working and the thought of going to one and making conversation just seems so daunting. I know connecting with other new moms would be a game changing thing to do, but I need some more time. This is something I wish I did in my pregnancy so that I had these relationships already created.
Sent Friends a Clear Message
I’m failing at friendship right now. It takes so much effort to respond to a text message and it’s impossible to call anyone back. I have 147 missed calls. I wish I had sent my friends an email letting them know exactly what I needed during this crazy time - which is a lot of grace and forgiveness for not being able to show up in the friendship. I also wish I had more of a plan in place so when people asked what they could do to help, I had answers. I wish I said: gift card to delivery services, helping out with Goofy (my dog), etc.
Stuck to My Original Registry Idea
I didn’t want a baby registry because I didn’t really know what the baby needed and we have no space in this tiny apartment. But so many people asked us to share our registry and I felt bad having nothing but gift cards on it so I put a ton of stuff on the list. We now have a ton of stuff and Gemma cares about 1/3 of it all. Gift cards are better, smarter, and more efficient. I wish I put: Amazon, DoorDash, Whole Foods, Target, and Uber gift cards on the list and that’s it.
Found Mom Sparknotes
I bought so many parenting books but to be honest reading them feels impossible. I need to learn about sleep training and introducing solids. I don’t have time to read a 200 page book about these topics. I wish I found mom sparknotes that summarized the popular books in just a few paragraphs.