"Am I doing this right?"
"I feel like I'm winging everything."
"I can't tell what my baby needs."
"I feel like a constant failure. Like everything I do is inadequate."
How *do* you know you are doing a good job?
A question I ask my clients all the time. I'm usually met with blank faces. Crickets. Sometimes even with creative answers.
If I keep my baby safe?
Seems obvious right? But it can be tricky to fall in that trap that we control every factor. We cannot prevent colds and viruses 100%. There will be bonks, scraps, bruises, broken bones, broken hearts. Those things actually develop stronger humans through new experiences. The big obvious safety precautions are a given for the purposes of this post.
If my baby doesn't cry a lot?
No. Because there are lots of healthy babies who are well cared for that cry quite a bit. It's developmentally appropriate to cry.
If my baby breastfeeds exclusively?
I think there are lots of parents who feed with bottles or breastfeed and supplement that demonstrate amazing parenting qualities. The truth is that parents can really struggle with feeding. Or they simply choose alternatives that are healthy for their child and family. They need support- not judgment.
If I respond to every cry?
Not possible. It is just not possible. Respond to the cries for hunger, comfort, diaper changes, and affection. That is a lot of work in itself. Do your best, leave the rest.
You know you are a getting this parent thing
when you show up even when it is new and scary.
When you rise to the challenges.
When you overcome obstacles.
When you stick to it.
When you take breaks THEN get back at it.
You love the child through difficult days.
You give your child affection and play daily.
If you are able to meet their needs to your best ability, you care.
Being an awesome parent starts with learning. More learning. Adapting. Experimenting. Observing. Learning some more.
Parents are learning a whole new person in a whole new relationship. Guess what, you are capable of learning!!
Most importantly, you will grow. Grow your resiliency and endurance.
Forgive yourself for not knowing it all before you started. It won't always be as hard as today because you'll adapt.
Start being kind to yourself that learning new things, a new person during a stressful time is kind of challenging. Sure- your baby is learning... but so are you!
You are learning new things everyday. That is enough.
Keep going friend. You can do this.
What Clients Are Saying
"Choosing Sophie as my postpartum doula is one of the wisest choices I have made related to the birth of my daughter. She comes into our home and provides an immeasurable amount of support and assistance. From helping with meal prep, to nursing advice and assistance, and helping me process how I am doing mentally band emotionally, Sophie does so much to help me feel capable and grounded in this time of change. Sophie doesn't just help with tasks around our home, she gives me tools and knowledge to help me care for myself, care for my baby, and understand and process the journey we are on together."
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