Wednesday, February 17, 2010

For ScienceGirl

Ecogeofemme is hosting a virtual baby shower for ScienceGirl!

So are here some humble words of advice and support, Sciencegirl and family:

Congratulations! You and your husband are about to begin an incredible adventure. You’re probably a little nervous. That is perfectly normal. In a few months, when you leave the hospital with a fragile newborn in your care, you will be completely petrified. That is also normal.

Just a few things to keep in mind through those first months:

1) Babies actually aren’t that fragile. They might not be able to lift their own heads, but they’re actually pretty resilient. I realized this for the first time when I saw the nurses manhandling my first-born at the hospital. The nurses swaddling, changing diapers, and examining the baby Bean certainly weren’t afraid of breaking her! And my husband, a pediatrician, wasn’t afraid either (it does help to be married to a pediatrician)

2) Poop comes in weird colors, consistencies, and on varying schedules.
That ghastly green-black stool that first comes out? That’s called meconium and it’s perfectly normal. And then those weird mustardy seedy stools? That’s normal, too. At first the baby may seem to go poop every five minutes. Normal. Then (if you’re breastfeeding) the baby might go only once a week. That’s normal, too. It’s also normal if he doesn’t.

3) You and your husband will be talking about baby poop a lot.

4) If you breastfeed, buy lanolin nursing cream.

5) SLEEP WHEN THE BABY SLEEPS!!! Forget about those dishes in the sink and the state of the house!

6) Let other people help.

7) Find a support group of other mothers who understand what you’re going through and don’t mind—indeed, will enthusiastically participate in—conversations about baby poop.

8) Colic may seem like it will last forever, but it IS temporary.

9) It’s all temporary. The good and the bad, both.

10) Your science will still be waiting for you when you get back from maternity leave.

11) You are going to be one awesome rocking mama.


Alyssa said...

Aw - great advice! And congrats to ScienceGirl!

ScienceGirl said...

Thank you so much for the thoughtful post! I am bookmarking it for when we return from the hospital, no doubt petrified of our inability to take care of our little one. I will especially try to keep in mind the "everything is temporary" part; hopefully it will help get through the rough parts and slow down enough to enjoy the good parts.

Thank you for your kinds words!