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When the baby arrives

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#1 Sagacious



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Posted 16 December 2010 - 08:24 PM

Apologies in advance for starting yet another thread..

All is going well as far as I am aware, and this baby means the world to me already.

However I am having anxious thoughts - how will I know what to do when the baby arrives?
I've never changed a nappy, have no idea how much to budget, when I should put my name down at child care, and the thought of birth terrifies me! sad.gif Plus 100 other things and more!

How do I prepare for the change my life is about to take?

I feel really ignorant at times and this is such an important part of my life - why don't I know anything about this? No matter how much I read in book chapters or the internet I still feel as though I am completely clueless!

Though I know i am very blessed and treasure every moment, I am feeling so overwhelmed.

Is it all very simple, and am I worried for no reason?
Or is there some information source out there I am missing?

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.
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#2 Rosita


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Posted 16 December 2010 - 08:35 PM

Big hugs. It is so ovewhelming that soon you will be almost wholly responsible for every need of another being. I cried when the Dr told me I was being induced as I wasn't ready to have a baby.

You are not the first going into this blind no will you be th last.

Nappies easy if using sposie watch huggies ads. They show the basics. If using MCN similar just don't throw them away. Midwives will have info for you and if like mine will be happy to help. It is their job.

I can't help you with the budget but birth will hurt. Worrying about it for 9 months will be of no benefit. No one can prepare you for it. Every experience is different.

I can't help with books I never read any. I figured the baby hadn't so, if I didn't I wasn't going to be any worse off.

Honestly you will be fine. You will be a great Mum. Baby needs food nappies, clothes and mum everything else is an extra.
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#3 SmittenKitten


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Posted 16 December 2010 - 08:58 PM

I totally know what you mean! I am not one to comment much because I have only been a mum for 4 months! But I was petrified of holding newborns. Did not know the first thing about BFing, bathing, changing etc.

The midwives in hospital were fantastic!! Any question I had I asked. (the poor buzzer got a work out thats for sure!) I also asked my mum alot of questions and even now I still have at least 1 question a day for her!

For the first few days I actually did not do much with Amelia, to tell yu the truth I just watched others....mum, the midwives and DH. I observed what they were doing and how they did it. DH was a natural.....at everything...for someone to be so natural with a baby was lovely to see, mum was fatastic and so I just watched......Then when I felt comfortable I gave her a bath with DH and mum both there. I also just "got in there" and changed her bum!! Changing her bum now is a fave part of my day because we have chats and she loves having that interaction.

As for holding her, I think i was not as careful because she was my own, I was always scared of holding newborns because I thought I could break them! But with Amelia it honestly just came naturally...because she was mine I felt so much more comfotable holding her!

As for childcare etc, MCHN are a great source of info (if u get a good one) and also lots of research on the net.

As for birth, I cant really comment. I was so afraid of birth I had an elective c-section. My anxiety levels were far too high to contemplate trying to labour her. It was honestly the best decision I have ever made in my whole life and I will never regret that for a second. If you need to chat about it please feel free to PM me.... The fear of labour was so powerful I totally get how you are feeling...
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#4 squeaza


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Posted 16 December 2010 - 09:32 PM

Huge hugs!

I knew very little about anything, apart from on here! I just read every topic about everything baby-related for the last year or two, and some of it sank in, even though some didn't really make sense until I had a baby here with me.

Also, just check how many topics some of us started during our pregnancy asking silly questions. In fact, they weren't silly questions, and someone here will always have an answer.

I wanted a baby and was thrilled to be pregnant, but still almost had a few panic attacks when I would be lying there half-asleep and suddenly tried to imagine our lives with a baby in it, and I couldn't envisage it at all sad.gif I would break out in a cold sweat and my heart would race... My very real fears were completely unfounded because once the baby arrived it was my baby and he was new to it all so we muddled our way through together.

I had had very little to do with newborns, but as soon as he was given to me to feed, I remembered how the midwife had shown us to attach them in the hospital classes, and off we went! Hubby hadn't done any research at all, hadn't read forums and books etc. and it was him who had to have the little bundle for an hour while I was in recovery, and it was him who had to deal with the first nappy changes. The midwives talked us through everything, and once you've done one of two nappy changes it's really straightforward biggrin.gif We were shown very carefully how to do a bath, including best ways to hold little wriggly slippery babies. I, like SK, asked lots and lots of questions of the midwives - about when best to change them, whether to undress them for feeds, how often to bathe, what to use in the bath, good folds for cloth nappies, how to help my sore nipples, how to look after my wound, you name it! They were so happy to help and sit down and have a chat.

As well as that, I found just reading a few of the basics sections in Baby Love to be very very helpful - the bits on feeding, what to dress them in, bathing, and nappies basically. Even though every baby is different, knowing what range of feed times would be prepared me. We subscribed a few months before E's birth to Practical Parenting, and there are some great articles about the basics in that, which I got hubby to read.

You will find that some of the hospital ante-natal classes deal with the newborn stuff as well as the birth (ours was half and half). My MCHNs have been great as well - have answered lots of questions about everything biggrin.gif I've found my mother's group to be great because we're all muddling along together - some people have sorted out routines, others are good at settling, one girl saw how I wrapped Eddie yesterday and I showed her, you name it.

On the birthing front, I really enjoyed Birth Skills by Juju Sundin - I didn't get all the way through (I was just standing up to go and read more when my waters broke!) but it made me feel like I was equipped with ways of dealing with the pain. If you are really worried, have you considered getting the services of a doula? We did, but unfortunately she got gastro the night I went into labour and my c-section had been decided upon before she could get her replacement out to us. It was great to have someone to talk to before about it, and to know that there would be someone there with me to help me and hubby.

Good luck with it all! never be afraid to ask lots of questions, and lots of (((hugs)))
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#5 Magnolia


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Posted 16 December 2010 - 09:38 PM

I was exactly in your position a few weeks ago. So I totally know where you're coming from. I'd never changed a nappy, only ever held a baby twice, for a total of 1/2 hour, and babies would always cry whenever I was around them. unsure.gif Holding my son for the first time was like holding some delicate, priceless antique. I couldn't believe the ease in which the midwives would just pick him up, hold him and touch him.

I thought there was no way in the world I was going to pick up all these things. But slowly I am. (though I'm still a new mum and I'm sure it'll take ages.)

When in hospital, get people to show you how to do things. Like swaddling. Everytime I wrapped up DS, he was unwrapped in a matter of minutes. I got the midwives to show me how to do it. I made them do it in slow motion. I even got them to show me different styles. Same with nappy changing. I'd never held a nappy before. I didn't know how tight to do up the tabs. How to wipe his bum. When we got home from hospital, DH and I changed his nappy together. I'm still learing. I can't tell you how many times I've been wee'd on. laugh.gif But I'm learning the signs he's about to fire. laugh.gif

I'd read tons of books, threads, and visited numerous baby websites. But nothing can really prepare you for it but just doing it. The midwives are there to help. Just ask. Use them as much as you can. They are around babies all the time and have probably exeperienced so much. If you don't understand something, ask again. Ask them to show you a different way. Or get another midwife to explain things to you.

There are phone numbers to call too. You'll no doubt be given them after you deliver.

Best of luck. Remember, you are not alone, nor are you the first person to go through this. When things seem tough, take a deep breath and you'll get through it. smile.gif

#6 Jaydee


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Posted 17 December 2010 - 04:35 AM

When I was heavily pregnant with Levi I remember just weeping one day, telling DH I'd barely even held a newborn, never changed a nappy, had no idea what I was doing, and he (Levi) would hate me because I'd be such an awful mother. In hindsight I think I might've been a bit dramatic but I really did have NO idea what I was doing.

When he was just born and the midwife asked me to try and give him his first feed I told her I couldn't move him (from where he was on my chest) because I was scared I'd break him. laugh.gif It makes me giggle now, but I really was!

The most helpful thing for me to remember was that babies don't know if you don't know what you're doing. They just know that you're their Mummy. Being a Mummy is new to you, and the entire world is so very new to them, so you get to learn together.

There will be times when you don't know how to stop them crying, or don't know whether they're hungry or overtired, or don't know that the noise they're making means they're about to vomit in your bra...and that's okay. You learn.

#7 KoolKat



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Posted 17 December 2010 - 05:49 AM

I remember making my way up to the ward after giving birth and thinking to myself "holy s@*t I can't give that thing back!" I looked across at my husband and I swear the look on his face said the exact same thing as I was thinking.

The best piece of advice I can give you is that you will make heaps of mistakes and that's totally ok. Seriously. Like the night when in our sleep deprived state we finally realised that bub would not stop crying because it was about 14 degrees in his room and hubby had accidently turned the heater off. We were both so tired we didn't even notice it was cold in there blush.gif We vowed never to speak of the incident we were so mortified. Or the countless times I would rock and sssh to get him to stop crying and then finally try winding him only to be greeted with a mammoth fart, after which he would promptly fall off to sleep ph34r.gif But you know what? He's lived, I've learnt so it's really all ok smile.gif
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#8 bluenomi


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Posted 17 December 2010 - 06:24 AM

I've been around babies a lot and I still had the odd freak out moment when I was pregnant. Having a baby is a huge change and it does take a while to get used too. I found while I read a lot when I was pregnant I forgot a lot of it so I just keep Baby Love handy and pulled it out when ever I wanted to check something (often at 3am) and reassure myself I was doing ok.

Take advantage of your midwives and MACH nurses, ask them anything and everything, I'm sure they have been asked every question before so nothing will sound stupid smile.gif Grill us I Do ladies, someone is bound to have an answer for you and go to New parents groups if you can. The thing I loved the most about mother's group was the fact there was always a baby who slept or fed worse than mine, made me feel much better laugh.gif

If all else fails just remember the baby isn't going to remember anything from those early days so if you stuff up a few times it isn't going to scar them for life tongue.gif Also every baby is different so a lot of advice and knowledge you get might not apply to your baby. Even after spending time with lots of babies I still had no clue what to do when Hattie had a breast refusal phase because none of the other babies I knew had done it. That freaked me out a bit but we worked through it.
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#9 Renee`


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Posted 17 December 2010 - 06:39 AM

I too had never had a child in my care prior to Kaele - I tried not to put too much thought into "What will I do when she is here" Because I figured I will know.

And know I did. You just know. I know that is of no comfort to you now. But your baby will be placed in your arms, and you will know how to hold the baby. You will go through a process of elmination if the baby is crying and after a little while, you will know your child so well you wont second guess yourself.

As for the nappy changing etc, whilst you are in hospital, buzz. Buzz for your middie to come and help. With Kaele, Klay did alot of the first changes, so when it came to changing her nappy I buzzed if he wasnt there. With Miller, I had forgotten (yes really...) so I actually had to call a midwife to come and make sure I was doing it right (Plus boy and girl is different LOL) I never mastered swaddling, so always asked a middie to do it, although I always stopped once home
They are there to help your transistion into being a mummy begin. So don't be afraid to using them.

As for budgeting , start now. Have a look on some great threads here and ask anyone who you think is a really good budgeter.

It is perfectly natural to worry about these things, how can you not? YOu are going to be the main care giver of another human being ! WOW!!

Trust you do know..
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#10 Cole29*



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Posted 17 December 2010 - 07:42 AM

QUOTE(Jaydee @ Dec 17 2010, 05:35 AM) View Post

The most helpful thing for me to remember was that babies don't know if you don't know what you're doing. They just know that you're their Mummy. Being a Mummy is new to you, and the entire world is so very new to them, so you get to learn together.

There will be times when you don't know how to stop them crying, or don't know whether they're hungry or overtired, or don't know that the noise they're making means they're about to vomit in your bra...and that's okay. You learn.

Well said Jaydee.

I have spent LOTS of time around my nephew, niece and best friend's daughter so had lots of recent hands on baby experience but I was still nervous.

My view is the anxiousness you feel now is worse than the reality (for the majority of people).

I know it is easier said than done but try not to worry about the actual birth aspect for a few reasons: 1. You have no idea what your experience will be 2. You cannot change it no matter how much you worry about it beforehand 3. IMO having a baby should be more about what happens after his/her arrival rather than during 4. It is scary for everyone, you are not alone trust me.
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#11 Thelma


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Posted 17 December 2010 - 09:02 AM

Whilst I didn't worry per se, I definitely had thought in my head that I wouldn't know what to do. When Lily was first born and she was lying on my chest, I was too scared to move her to see her because I didn't know how to hold her properly. And my midwife gave her her first bath because I was too scared and didn't know how to do it.

But over time I just did stuff because I had to. I didn't worry how things were 'supposed' to be done, I just did them how I thought was best.

#12 ~Bella~


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Posted 17 December 2010 - 12:04 PM

I cant remember much about the last month or so of being pregnant and the first two months of him being born, its all a bit of blurr but we have made it thus far and we are still going strong.

I found as im a big reader/researcher i loved reading all the threads on here, followed other mummie threads, and scoured the internet and some books that i had.

But it still does prepare you in any way i found. Always ask for help if you need, either by the middies in hospital, your ECHN, gp or family. Someone is always willing to help, and like someone else has said there are even places you can call for advice.

You know the best thing, bubs cant understand the fact that you are/have made any mistakes and as long as he/she is fed, warm clothed bum changed and has his/her mummy and daddy around all will be ok.

You WILL be alright. And you ARE capable.


P.s Oh and us i-do girls are always willing to help you with any sort of questions, so dont hesistate to ask, as we are good support network and a wealth of knowledge happy.gif
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#13 ~steph~


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Posted 17 December 2010 - 12:18 PM

To be honest, if it wasn't for this place I wouldn't have had a clue, really not one, I wouldn't have even known when to test if I was pregnant!!!!

I had never held a child younger than 3, and even then I had very little to do with them. None of my friends had kids, I had never changed a nappy and we honestly didn't have a clue.

The best advice I can give you is that it is alright not to know what to do, it comes naturally to some and not others, you are not a bad mum/person if it doesn't come naturally. We sought help on day 7 after H was born. My stay in hospital was a nightmare and I learnt nothing, the midwife only reluctantly showed me how to change a nappy, but that was it!!!!
On day 6 I realised we were screwed, so called a local daystay place and managed to be squeezed in the next day due to H being so young. There I got settling advice, feeding advice and what to do with them advice. I wish I had known about them prior to having H as they did prenatal classes and talked through all the stuff we were taught on our day there. It was only because of this forum I even knew something like that existed.
Hubby was really opposed to us going as 'we should know what to do'. Well we didn't and after going there for the day even he says it was worth its weight in gold and now advices all our friends to go there if they have issues.

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#14 HayleyNZ


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Posted 17 December 2010 - 01:19 PM

I can sympathise biggrin.gif I have only ever held babies, never taken care of them or changed nappies.

While I have felt anxious at various times in this pregnancy, I figure as long as I don't - drop him, scald him in the bath or leave him on the roof of the car and drive away or some other life threatening thing, then we are doing fine. None of these things are going to happen and any other mistake less than that won't matter in the scheme of things.

I do feel like I will not know what I am doing but that is ok, I have let my inner control freak accept that and I just need to go with the flow. smile.gif laugh.gif

A lot of people have told me that you can read too much and I agree, to a point. However I found the information valuable and it has given me the confidence to know I can do it. I now know about routines, sleeping, reflux, what to do if baby looks sick, tired signs, breastfeeding, expressing, how long to store milk and how I want to parent. I know reading is no substitute for doing but it gives a good background.

I even have our routine (am prepared for flexibility too though wink.gif ), golden rules of baby raising (what not to do etc- out of a book) and milk storage info taped to our pantry door and baby's room door ph34r.gif so when I am frazzled and can't think, I can refer to it laugh.gif

Hope that helps!! PM me if you want me to email through those golden rules, I think they are going to be life saving!!
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#15 Sagacious



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Posted 17 December 2010 - 05:51 PM

WOW - Trust the lovely ladies of I-Do to know the answers! wub.gif

Thank you all so very much. I can't tell you how much it means to me, to know that:
a. I am not the only one
b. I can (and will) know and learn what to do
c. there is such a wonderful support group in here
d. I have so many avenues to explore - Midwife advice, Doula, Daystay, and of course PM's to some of you wonderful women!
e. That copy of Baby Love needs to be opened and read - not just left on the desk!
f. It is OK to be afraid of birth, and not know (as any plan could easily change on the day)

It is so comforting to see your support after my night of crazy worrying and quite a few tears. ph34r.gif

Should anyone else have any feedback or advice, it is welcomed with open arms.

I wish I had more words, but.. THANK YOU! biggrin.gif
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