It’s an exuberating feeling when you hold your little baby in your hand for the first time. In my case, while I was still under anesthesia and in waiting till I am shifted to my room, my husband was over the moon with the baby. All joyous and ready to celebrate.
But parenting is not easy, and it has its own sets of emotions, confusion and apprehension too. It’s a life-long commitment and you know it’s going to be a ride you and your spouse will enjoy for life but at the same time it is going to demand a lot of adjustments, compromises and a bunch of understanding between both the partner.
No, by no means I am trying to scare you. I am a mom of two and I can’t stop counting my blessings for the little humans that God blessed me with and the amount of help I got from my husband who is still a hands-on dad. Always ready to take over from me and spend time with our kids.
But yes, as a new parent, we were half prepared. We got some things sorted and planned like making the room spacious to accommodate a new member who is going to eventually capture the entire space for him/herself, booking the hospital beds in advance so that you get a good discount and being ready with our hospital bag and keeping the family in loop so when I am in the labor room and my husband is pacing the corridors, there is someone in family who is setting the things in motion for the new baby to come. But the real fun begins once the baby is home for which we were not thoroughly prepared.
It’s a drill in the beginning. Wake up, feed, clean, burb and make the baby sleep again. In between all this, you feel exhausted, drained and at times bursting with emotions and tears due to the sleepless nights.
It’s a daunting task to manage a new baby but when its teamwork, you and your spouse both will have fun in this journey of parenthood.
So dear fathers, while moms are going to experience a lot of changes in their life and body, you as a spouse and father will have to be ready to embrace these changes.
So let’s see what are they and how you can handle them;
Breastfeeding: While breastfeeding is a blessing bestowed only upon the mother, it can be stressful and painful at times specially in the beginning. But this is a mother’s solo job and as a father you don’t have much to do here but post breastfeeding, you can surely help. Take the baby and walk around and make it burp while the mother can relax a bit after sitting for a longer time. Also, if the baby is on expressed bottle milk or top feed, you can surely take over this duty which will give your partner some respite.
Hormones: The baby is out but the hormones are still raging. From depression to crying for no reason, feeling drained and emotional and fighting over small things, your woman will experience it all. So be prepared. While one is on a hormonal ride, you can stay calm and positive and help her deal with her issues rather than arguing over the changed behavior.
Weight Loss: It took nine months for the uterus to stretch so that it can hold the baby. It’s not a balloon which will deflate once the baby is out. It takes time to shed the baby weight and as a new mom, your spouse will need time from her new duties to commit time to herself. So be understanding and appriciate the body. Don’t be amazed by the immediate body change you see in celebrity moms. They have their own means and a lot of help to manage the child while they concentrate on themselves.
Don’t refuse any help: If your parents are ready to cook a meal, let them do it. If your friends offer to bring dinner while coming over, accept it. If your sister is willing to look after the baby while you both can have some couple time, grab the offer without any qualms. And most importantly don’t refuse any offer to grab a nap.
Listen: As a new parent, you and your spouse will be given a lot of advice by parents and elders, friends and family and while you may listen to them, don’t forget that the most important person whom you need to hear is the mother of the baby. Encourage her to tell you how she is feeling and if there is anything she needs. Likewise, even she will listen to you and your needs. You get the best results when you work in a team.
Pickup from where your partner left: Parenting is a laborious 24*7 job and don’t expect your partner to conquer it all at the house front with a baby in tow. If there is no dinner made, order food or you can take the baton in your hand and cook up a nice meal. If the laundry, dishes or the dusting work is piled up, you can pick up the slack whenever you can.
Night Duty: While the baby wakes up in the middle of the night for feed, you may not be able to do much here, but you can surely help if the baby is on a bottle feed. Also, taking the baby in and out of the crib, changing the diaper and walking it around to burp and sleep can help you ease a lot of your partner’s burden.
Stay healthy: If you are fit and healthy, you will be able to help your partner in the best possible way. Make sure you eat well and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Go for a jog or work out at home. Keep yourself energized and positive.
Becoming a dad is one of the biggest events your life and as a dad you are going to have a huge impact on your child’s life. And you can start working on it from the start. Newborn comes into this world ready to connect with both the parents, mom and dad.
This blog is part of Blogchatter Half Marathon Stay tuned for some more fun topics and don’t forget to drop a comment if you liked what you read here.