No two kids are the same meaning that there’s no parenting rule book with all the definitive answers, it’s all about trial and error and learning from your mistakes without being too hard on yourself. We’ve put together a quick list of 5 things to avoid in your first parenting year.
1.Try not to sweat the small stuff
New experiences can automatically translate into scary in the first year. We can obsess about what ‘normal’ is and this in itself is normal. Unnecessary anxiety isn’t good for you or the baby, especially when they’re like little sponges, absorbing the all around them. Confidence will come with time and there are always courses and classes that help us to feel more empowered such as the Parent First Aid which offers great first aid classes for parents. If you’re prepared for the big stuff then you can take the small things in your stride.
2. Don’t live in fear of tears
We are biologically programmed to react to a crying child and we associate those tears with something that we’ve done wrong which can give rise to instant guilt or panic. The reality however is that babies are made to cry, it’s what they do. Without their own words, it’s often how they communicate so take care of the essentials and try not to panic when they cry. If the crying persists heavily for an hour and is accompanied with other signs then check in with a paediatrician. Again, learning to read your baby will come with time.
3. Catching up on life when they catch up on Zs
Many parents are tempted to stay up late after their baby has gone to sleep because they want time to unwind, time with their partner or time to catch up on work. The list is endless but bear in mind that these hours of quiet in the early days are best put towards precious sleep. A comfy and secure cot from the likes of Silver Cross Baby can give piece of mind when you’re looking to catch some hours of calm yourself. When your routine begins to normalise after some months, then spend their sleeping time as you choose but don’t underestimate the importance of rest in the first year.
4. Car seat knowledge gaps
So, you’ve gone through all the research and done your online browsing for the perfect car seat. It’s during the installation phase that the real struggle begins with a huge majority of car seats being installed incorrectly unbeknownst to parents. Make sure you invest in a secure car seat from somewhere like Kiddy or B-Safe Infant Car Seats and we encourage you to get an installation demonstration if possible. Once your baby is safely secured, you can take them out adventuring.
5. Baby Bag Essentials
Leaving the house for an hour can look like you’re leaving the country for a month given the number of bags you’ve packed but these small people require a lot of things. We would recommend that you keep a list of baby essentials that you can refer to before you leave the house because when you leave in a flurry, there’s sure to be one vital article missing. Companies such as ‘Bow and Rattle’ have a beautiful range of luxury baby bags which perfectly balance functionality and style so you have access to everything you need without ruining outfits.