The One Piece of Baby Advice All Moms Need to Hear

The Best Baby Advice You Never GotI was visiting a friend this past weekend and we got to talking about baby advice. As you might guess, with four kids, I often get asked what tips I'd give to new moms.

Over the years, I've come up with some pretty great answers, but the advice my friend gave at a recent baby shower topped any of mine. In fact, it's so awesome, I'll be doling it out whenever I can (with credit to her, of course).

So I know you're wondering what words of wisdom could be so amazing, and the truth is they're pretty simple. Her advice (and now mine):

Never say never.

When she told me, I had to chuckle, because it's really pretty smart. It has nothing to do with sleep because we all know no mom ever actually sleeps when the baby sleeps.

And it has nothing to do with self-care because we all know that no mom ever really does a great job of taking care of her own needs as much as those of her baby.

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But we also all know that moms say things about parenting they end up going back on later. We've all eaten our words time and time again.

Because kids aren't robots. Because kids are crazy. Because we love our kids so much, we'd do a whole heck of a lot of ridiculous things that we would never have believed if someone had told us. 

And we all know that sometimes you break your own "rules" because you need sleep and quiet.

When you tell a new mom (or even a seasoned mom), "Never say never," I feel like you're giving her a pass, an excuse of sorts that lets her just go with the flow.

Or on some days, just survive.

It doesn't tell her how to feed her baby or how to wear her baby or even anything having to do with her baby.

But it does make her think about what's she's doing and saying, not just to her baby, but to her partner and herself.

And it gives her permission to accept that being a parent can be really crazy. Crazy scary. Crazy awesome.

All sorts of crazy.

So don't limit yourself by those preset standards you and your partner may not be able to keep. Just go with your gut, love your baby (and yourself), and give yourself the gift of endless possibilities.

What's your best baby advice?


Image via loimere/Flickr

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zombi... zombiemommy916

Just this...whenever you feel like you're sinking, that you simply can't take another second of crying, poopy diapers, spit-up, etc...think of Newtown, think of any mother who would give anything to hear a crying baby in the house again...I know it's morbid but it puts things into perspective...cherish every single moment, even the incredibly tough all passes so quickly...just know how lucky you truly are :)

missy... missybest

Great advice, zombiemommy916!  I am so disturbed by all the complaints, wah, wah, wahs, etc.  No one should have a baby until they are truly ready and really want to raise a child.  It is minimum 18 years of your life and it is full-time, everyday - even if you work.  It is not only a baby, it is a total commitment to a child/children, basically for the rest of your life, if you do it well.

I had a moment in the first week with my new baby.  I wanted my baby, I wanted all the things above, BUT, in the first week, with no sleep, exhaustion and fear within me, as I walked down the hall to my crying little one, I had a scary thought.  I thought for one brief moment, "What have I done to my life?"  LOL.  It shocked me that I would say such a thing.  However, no one can prepare a brand new parent about what is really in store for you.  :-)  I took a deep breath and told myself, "It's OK.  I will be fine and my baby will be fine.  This will get easier and love the short time you have with a newborn.

Then, I spent times at two months saying, "Oh this is the best!  This is the cutest!"  Same again each month after.  Watching more personality growing, more smiles, more first things.  Love, love, love that little one at every age.  My kids are grown now and I miss all those wonderful times and wonderful moments.  It is all over so quickly.

nonmember avatar me

You know, its ok not to cherish every moment of every day. Setting that as a goal, I think, really can set you to fail. Its ok to feel stressed sometimes, its ok to not love the terrible twos or the sleepless nights or the potty training all the time, or at all. What id say, is try to find moments you cherish every day, even if its watching that screaming toddler peacefully sleep and cherishing that moment. The time passes fast and its important to realizevthat and enjoy it, but youre not a bad parent if you dont marvel every second.

My advice is choose your battles. Is it going to matter if she wants to wear the same pink shirt every day? To me it doesnt, to you it maybe does, but pick the battles that are worth fighting over in the long run.

Sarah... SarahHall58

Zombie mommy - thank you. That actually helped me today when I was getting frustrated. I have a 4 week old baby. That really helped. Thank you again

Monica K Jensen

My grandmother gave me some great advice about parenting....specifically in dealing with the challenges of kids.  She had six boys, so I figured she'd had a goodie or two....and boy did she ever!  It was in regard to the antics that kids pull that can drive a parent insane.  She said, "Either it is a phase and they will get over it OR it's a personality trait and you will get used to it." Hilariously true. :)

Mrs.B... Mrs.Bolin

I slept when my babies slept. and i made time to get myself taken care of and kept.......I didn't let that baby take over my life. My needs were met too

ginge... gingermommy86

Don't forget to laugh!! Parenting can be hard and stressful but those sweet moments make it all worth it!

Rhond... RhondaVeggie

I tell new parents to go with the flow and not over think things. I remember worrying that I wouldn't know when my first was ready to try new things and that was pointless. Babies aren't stupid, give them a little space and they'll keep you right. A few days ago I was giving my youngest a donut (don't judge me!) and I ripped off some bite size pieces. She gave me a look then picked up the rest of the donut and very pointedly ate it to show me she doesn't need me to do that now.

pmcca... pmccauley

Take it a day at a time. Start everyday fresh and everytime you feel like your about to explode, take a deep breath and make your child laugh. Childrens laughter is a cure-all.

Grann... GrannyMeTo

Here's a great piece of advice given to me years ago by my dad "What difference does it make?" (this - when the kid was driving me nuts about wanting something or other - & I couldn't make up my mind...)

Now I'm a grandparent & I realize he was right...time passes by so fast when they are young...I wish I had enjoyed it more...

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