After 8 months of Munchkin madness here’s a few things I have learnt along the way…
1: Advice is often conflicting
With a new baby comes a barrage of information. There’s the NHS website, NHS courses, private courses, staff during pregnancy, after pregnancy and post natal care. Oh and then there is other websites, apps and chat boards. Then with anything, be it weaning, sleeping, routines, or milestones there is different information on each source.
For us, we just took an overview of many sources, then just went with our hearts and did what we thought was best for our little muffin.
2: Enjoy every minute
Yes it’s a ballache (or a…breast ache?) waking up at 1am 3am 5am to get up for work at 6am however it doesn’t last long and before you know it, the days are over when they can fit in your arms for a nap and now it’s time weaning and rolling over or chasing them as they crawl and then run away. Time goes fast so saviour every moment, the good, the bad and the ugly.
3: Nothing can really prepare you
We skipped along to the antenatal breast feeding class and came away brimming with knowledge and confidence. Four weeks later our Munchkin arrived and it was all shot down in a day. Nothing can really prepare you. I’m not knocking the classes, but merely saying to take all the advice with a pinch of salt. Every baby is different and every baby will behave differently to the average baby in every little thing they do.
4: You don’t need everything or the best of something
If you’re left thinking ‘how am I going to afford everything I need for my baby’, one of the biggest things I have learnt is you dont need everything and you dont need the best of the best. We personally invested in a good travel system, but opted for a cheap rocker and play mat. Facebook marketplace is your friend too. There is many a bargain of baby bits on there!
5: It will get easier
You thought you had a bad day befor parenting? Oh how wrong you were. However, its always short lived. Me and Natalie had the worst first 5 days following our Munchkin’s arrival as he initially struggled to feed then forgot how to sleep, however it was just 5 short days. For every bad day there is equally a day of magic and joy.
6: Hurdles are there for leaping over
My biggest hurdle I found was that I was so used to being in my happy bubble where I would always have my wifey, family or my friends by my side. However, stepping into shared parental leave I was suddenly on my own. This made leaving the house with my Munchkin alone to go to a baby group where im the token daddy on shared leave a much bigger step than i expected.
But hurdles are there to be overcome. I started with small steps in getting out the house and going around the block and back home then it wasnt long before i could go anywhere. Whatever your hurdles may be, don’t fear them. Approach them slowly and you will jump across them.
In most things there isn’t a right or wrong. There’s a choice. When it comes to parenting, choose what you want to do and how you want to raise your child. We are all different because of the different ways we are raised.
Thanks for reading,
Daddy and Munchkin