You can trust me because I’ve had two kids, so now I’m clearly an expert. Okay all you moms with a flock around you, hardee-har-har. Yeah, I have much to learn... but let me have my moment of fame, yeah? My nine months are over, thank goodness! (And yeah, my second girl was born on Jesus’ birthday. I didn’t see them angels singing for her arrival now did I?) I may be sleep deprived, but yay I finally have my body back. Anyways, with that redundant update over... here it is: My Top 5 Facts for the New Mom.
1. Maternity Pants are overrated.
No seriously, they’re glorified leggings. FACT! Yes that elastic band is comfortable but the fabric was not meant for a woman’s body. They lack pockets and the material was far too thin. (There’s this thing called winter, and it’s freaking cold!) Literally, it’s wear and tear. Simply having bigger clothes like looser jeans will benefit the new mom before and after birth. And don’t worry, you had a baby... that’s proof your man thinks you’re hot stuff—so don’t sweat it and go for the sweats for a while.
2. Not everyone can breastfeed.
It’s worth a try and it will help you recover. But put your baby on the weighing scale often and listen to your healthcare professionals. The milk is free, comforting, and full of antibodies, but it’s not much help if it’s simply not there. Don’t let pride starve your child. Formula is bloody expensive. The cheap stuff is all filler—then there’s the bottles. Just do what you got to do so they get what they need.
3.The amount of ultrasounds you have will vary.
Depending on the child’s health and your health or anything concerning either, you may have more or less than two three visits with the sonographer. And yes, follow their instructions and drink the water! Some pregnancies require multiple tests, others few. Information is your doctor’s friend.
4. Birth is not entirely free.
In British Columbia, while most medical services are free to Canadian citizens there are few exceptions. Since circumcision is optional for traditional practices and not necessary for the child’s well-being, the parent would be billed. There is a small fee for the birth certificate.
Immunizations are free including the flu shot. The dental screening is free too. (This is awesome because they help you with brushing techniques, search for decay, and provide a fluoride treatment to strengthen the enamel.) BC Health even offer to check the infant’s hearing, again for free. After the child is born, a mother is given the option for a nurse to visit to check on the health of both baby and parent.
5. You will see a new side to your community.
Where I live, the pregnancy outreach centre downtown is where mothers can pause from their errands to nurse their child, find supplies like baby clothes or gear, and be educated by various experts. Child Development Centres are another incredible hub for connecting with other parents, children, and resources. By signing up for their newsletters, they will inform a parent on neat opportunities fit for the child’s needs and sponsored events bringing fun to the whole family. Extra hands make light work. I was blessed by my local church when they planned and hosted an open baby shower for us, saving us hundreds on clothes and supplies, and offering renown tips.
In summary, adding a child to your family is going to raise costs. But one might be lucky in saving big costs by breastfeeding, using cloth diapers, accepting hand-me-down clothes, and borrowing baby gear and toys. Even if your child is healthy, take advantage of the help others are willing to give you.
Photo credit: Dakota Corbin on Unsplash